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Saturday, 6 September 2014

Wangwaci women trained on bead work

By Bob Aston
Ornament making has significantly grown over the last few years.  This has been a source of livelihood for many women in Kenya. The potential that this sub sector provides has led to Laikipia Forest Conservation Area Project through Community Development Trust Fund (CDTF) to organize a two (2) days training from 2-3 September, 2014 for two women groups in Wangwaci area, Laikipia West on ornament making using beads.
Members of Makutano B and Smart Lady Women Group are now seeing a bright future as each of them is optimistic that they will be financially empowered through the initiative. The women were divided into groups of seven (7) members where they were trained on making baskets, purses, necklaces, bangles, anklets and earrings.
The women busy at work
Veronica Kemunto, one of the beneficiaries of the initiative said that she will no longer buy a basket or purse as she will now be designing her own. She said that she will now be able to improve her livelihood through making ornaments using beads.
“I will now be spending most of my time in the house making baskets and purses. I will be investing the proceeds from my sales in farming,” said Kemunto.
Her sentiments were echoed by Agnes Wamuyu who said that she expects to be economically empowered as this will be an income generating activity. She is also planning to teach other women who did not have the chance to attend the training.
The women are planning to sell each basket between Ksh 1,500 and Ksh 2,000 depending on the type of basket while women purses will retail at Ksh 500 while prices of bangles will vary between Ksh 200 to Ksh 500 depending on design required by a customer.
Laikipia Forest Conservation Area Project is planning to support the women with beads and threads until they are deemed as stable. They are also planning to link them with a market.
The Kenyan Constitution has opened many opportunities that take cognizance of the role of women and their full participation in economic, political and social sectors. Many Kenyan opinion leaders believe that empowering women to participate fully in economic life is essential in improving the quality of life for women.

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