MARA was founded with the principals of local and community corporate social responsibility being part of the initial vision for the company. We are especially interested in empowerment of women.
Barsaloi Women’s Project
At first we looked for a worthwhile charity to donate a percentage of sales of MARA Wine to, but through serendipity we were put into touch with a group of Colombian Nuns running a rescue centre for destitute women in the very remote and arid northern region of Barsaloi in Kenya.
These women had been cast out of their tribes or ran away from their families, and in an area such as Barsaloi there is very little chance for them to survive except with the help of this group of nuns. An idea had been formed to work with these groups of women to have them produce the beaded amulets for our bottles and so provide them with a source of income and for them to rediscover lost indigenous artisanal skills.
Made with love, empowering women
Due to the enormous success of MARA Wine, the demand for the amulets soon out-stripped this group’s ability to produce and so we looked for an additional source of amulets. Subsequently we have set up another women’s group within Kenya to produce these hand made traditional African bead necklaces. With the growing demand our plan is to continue to support more groups regionally in this activity.