We are located in Maasai-Mara, Kenya.
In recent years, thanks to the modernization that has taken place: roads have been paved, schools opened, every person has a smartphone - the global world has reached the Maasai land.
The main beneficiaries of the change are the men and children: men have been offered employment opportunities in hotels and the nearby nature reserve as rangers or drivers. The children go to schools, acquire an education, and they, too, upon graduation find employment.
But who is left behind?
You guessed it: the elder women. Those women who have never been educated and do not know how to speak any language other than the Maasai language.
Paradoxically it is these women who are in charge of the household. They are the ones who buy food home and pay for their children's education.
These same women are trying to benefit from tourism, and are engaged in what they know to do best as it is their long traditional culture: stringing beads, a tradition that passed on from mother to daughters.
Currently, the Maasai women use poor quality materials, work under the scorching sun and the only way they can market their art is by running after the tourist cars and trying to sell through the car windows.
Their income in this way - minimal.
It's time for a change!
The Art-Center, at the entrance to the Maasai-Mara park is empowering the women by providing them with:
Good working environment.
Supply of good materials.
Having more income will have immediate impacts not only on the women's lives, but on their whole families, as women are the ones who feed the family and pay for children's education.
Income = financial independence = food and education!