Kulisumpula Recycled Glass

Kulisumpula means ‘to lift oneself up’ and for 15 women from Ndagilla Village they are generating income from making beads from glass bottles collected from the safari lodges.

Cedi is a famous bead maker from Ghana and came out to train two groups of women how to turn glass bottles into beads. Building a kiln from clay we added an insulation layer mixed with sawdust to increase efficiency. The glass is then crushed into powder and shards, placed inside earthen molds and then fired in the kiln.

These unique beads are then made into jewelry, accessories and decorative items which are sold to and in the lodge shops; items are also sold in the community itself.

This not only provides income for local women, it also add to the overall permaculture strategy by tackling waste and recycling.

Basket Weaving

Basket weaving is a traditional skill in the area, especially among Tonga and Nambiyan women. Baskets are woven from the leaves of the Ilala palm tree, also Sisal is used in a different style.

Traditional dying methods use the roots of the bird plum tree to turn the leaves dark brown. There are several groups in the area who get together to weave baskets.

Baskets are sold in some of the safari lodges with 100% of funds going back to the weavers. Wanting to try new dyes for a diversity of colours the groups have been using single use plastic to weave new life into the waste and bring colour to the baskets.Different designs and uses have been developing with the group and quality control is vital, with direct links to shops in Victoria falls and Bulawayo. Using natural and recycled materials to generate income from the tourism industry.

If you are able to help with new sales channels for our local beautiful beads and home wares, we would welcome your support, please contact Laurie via laurie@softfootalliance.org