Community Empowerment and Women's Health
AKTF has been supporting projects that empower the community to generate sustainable livelihoods. The Olorboisoto Maasai ladies’ beading group is one of the projects that engages the Maasai women in making beaded bracelets, which in turn are sold internationally.
The income to date has been invested in:
1) The purchase of two grain-grinding machines which they lease out to bring in a regular income.
2) Sewing and selling uniforms.
3) A small shop that sells basics like milk and flour.
The money from the bead work and these ventures allow these women to feed their families and send their children to school.
AKTF is proud that the beading project is certified by Wildlife Friendly, a group that works hard to help communities and wildlife co-exist in harmony.
Ushanga Kenya Initiative Project: Empowering Pastoral Women Through Their Beadwork
AKTF is honored to have been invited to partner with the Kenyan Government in the Ushanga Kenya Initiative Project which will provide financing, training, marketing and a new platform on the international market for the Women’s Cooperatives to sell their beautiful beadwork.
The project seeks to bring this ancient tradition into the modern world and hopefully generate a healthy profit for the Maasai ladies.
We founded and manage the Esidai Women’s Group who sew washable sanitary napkins, especially important to young women so they don't have to miss school.
Feminine hygiene products are extremely hard to come by and too expensive, if available at all. Furthermore, with no waste management, the disposable products are very detrimental to the environment.
Potable Water & Health Education
In addition to providing water tanks, AKTF partnered with Life Straw Filters and A&K Philanthropy to install water filters at several schools. These initiatives ensure the children have potable water rather than drinking straight from polluted rivers, streams or dams.
AKTF leads workshops on basic health and hygiene at which we address educating young girls, (and boys!) about their bodies and fertility in an attempt to avoid pre-adolescent pregnancies (e.g.11 years old!) which are unfortunately all too frequent.
Combining hygiene education and micro-finance training, we started a soap-making project with about 25 local women who are now producing dish soap, hand washing soap, and multi-purpose soap for their own use as well as for sale. This creates a valuable product for women to sell, and it also encourages better hygiene in the community, thereby reducing disease transmission.
In addition to teaching women to make soap, AKTF is also giving them business training so that they can sell the soap in order to provide additional income for themselves, independent of their husbands. We are excited to see where these women are able to take their new skills!