Purchasing handmade beaded products can help save endangered wildlife in Kenya by relieving the pressure on natural resources.
Each handmade Beads for Wildlife piece you purchase provides a woman in Northern Kenya with the choice of a reliable income that doesn't impact local wildlife.
The Beads for Wildlife program supports more than 900 women earn enough income to support her entire family.
This alternative income source reduces her family's reliance on livestock, which reduces the number of domestic animals competing with wildlife for natural resources.
The program also helps improve food security and access to health care for the community.
Buy a Beads for Wildlife product and help reduce the pressure on endangered animals in Africa.
How does the program work?
In Northern Kenya, wildlife such as the Endangered Grevy’s Zebra are competing with domestic livestock for natural resources such as grass and water. Zoos Victoria is working with the local Rendille tribe of the Melako Community Conservancy to restore the natural balance to the rangelands and ensure people, livestock and wildlife are supported.
Beadwork is a part of everyday life for the women in Melako. They will often sit under a shady tree talking and laughing while creating beautiful and unique beadwork jewellery.
Zoos Victoria purchases the beadwork from our partners, Northern Rangelands Trust, the beadwork then makes its way to our zoo stores for everyone to buy and enjoy.
What do the different bead colours mean?
The different colours of the beadwork represent various elements in the lives of the Rendille people.
Black: The people and life’s journey
Blue: The sky which provides water to the land
Green: The land that grows food for the cattle
White: The milk that nourishes the community
Red: The blood of the cow
Yellow: The animal skins
Orange: Hospitality that is offered to guests