The project is run by Robyn Forsythe, a film maker from the UK.
Handmade traditional maasai jewelry crafted by the mamas of Enkiito village, Kenya, using environmentally friendly and reclaimed materials. The ladies of this community, situated just North of Amboseli national park, receive a fair wage for their products, allowing them to send their children to school. Profits from the sale of all items go towards the building of a well to provide clean drinking water for the people of Enkiito.
Everybody who works on this project is a volunteer and there are no overhead costs – all of the donations and profit from the jewelry sales go straight into the well fund, so you know exactly what is being done with your money!
When you buy an item from Enkiito Maasai Jewelry you will receive a label with the name of the lady who made it.
Enkiito is a Maasai village, where we live traditional life. We keep goats and cows, and wear many jewelry. The Maasai favourite colour is red."
Jackson Lais What the jewelry means An outsider might think that Massai people have dressed up for some special occasion. This is normally not the case though. Although some jewelry is worn for special occasions (such as for marriage or circumcision ceremonies) most jewelry is worn throughout an entire stage of life. For example, indicating her increasing wealth and her place in life, a married woman adorns beaded necklaces as she grows older. Each piece of jewelry, in its shape, patterns, and colors, speaks of the wearer’s culture. People within that culture can tell a woman’s exact status–her age, marital status, even whether she has given birth to a son–by observing her beaded jewelry.
Unmarried Maasai girls often wear a large flat beaded disc that surrounds their neck when dancing. They use the movement of the disc to display their grace and flexibility.
Women will wear a very elaborate and heavy beaded necklace on their wedding day. The necklace often hangs down to the brides knees and can make it very difficult for her to walk.
A married Maasai woman will wear a Nborro, which is a long necklace with blue beads.
Red signifies danger, ferocity, bravery, strength, and especially unity, because it is the color of the blood of the cow that is slaughtered when the community comes together in celebration.
Blue is significant because it represents the sky which provides water for the cows.
Green represents the land which grows food for the cattle to eat. Green also represents the health of the Massai community because there is a local plant called olari which grows tall and plentiful, as the Massai hope they will too.
Orange symbolizes hospitality because it is the color of the gourds that hold the milk that is offered to visitors.
Yellow also suggests hospitality because it is the color of the animal skins on guest beds.
White represents purity, because white is the color of milk, which comes from a cow, considered by the Maasai as a pure and holy animal. White also represents health, because it is milk that nourishes the community.
Black represents the color of the people but more importantly the hardships we all go through in life. It suggests that difficult times are experienced by everyone because those difficulties are part of the same, natural sequence of life.
Owner, Creator The story of Jackson Alais, and his family in Enkiito village, Kenya. Jackson is a maasai warrior. But even he can't fight the evils that are plaguing his tribe.
You can help at buildjacksonawell.com
ENKIITO - NAIROBI, KENYA