Discover A Craft As Old As Our Ancestors

At Carakana in Kenya the ancient tradition of basket weaving is continued through the hands of vulnerable women.

Brown Basket With Throw Pillows Used as Decor (2022/2022) by DorothyOriginal Source: Carakana

What Is Carakana?

Carakana is a social enterprise which facilitates the transfer and preservation of indigenous skills and cross stitching. This is achieved through the production of quality handmade items for sustainable livelihoods and wellbeing of vulnerable groups. Herein are their stories.

Making A Basket (2021/2021) by SaidaOriginal Source: Carakana


As well as cross stitching, the art of basketry is a craft which members of the Carakana community have used to showcase their talent. Herein ,the  Carakana members narrate their stories on how the craft has turned around their fortunes and they showcase their work.

Black With White Weaved Strapless and Strapped Basket (2022/2022) by SaidaOriginal Source: Carakana

Strapless Versus Strapped Basket

The first photograph is an a basket after being weaved without straps , while the second one is a basket which is completed.

Brown With Maroon Weaved Basket (2022/2022) by MwanziaOriginal Source: Carakana

New Ways, New Doors

 "I am Mwanzia, a grandmother in my sixties, I learned how to weave as a young girl. Through the years the market has become less  profitable. When Carakana came, we had so much stock and not much ideas on value addition. We are now learning new ways that have opened new doors."

Potted Snake Plant in a Basket (2022/2022) by IdaOriginal Source: Carakana

A Turn Around Moment

"I am Ida, and I am glad to be a part of what Carakana is doing in my village. Carakana trained us on value addition, it has turned around our business. I have also rekindled my hobby with plants as the baskets make great accessories, and it has really complemented the business."

Blue With White Stripes Weaved Basket (2022/2022) by MwanziaOriginal Source: Carakana

We Don't Want Our Culture To Die With Us

"I am Beth, I learnt how to weave from my late mother. I have been weaving for almost twenty-five years now. It has not only been a source of income but a way of living for our community. I am grateful that Carakana is going to help us pass this skill to the next generation."

Brown With Yellow Weaved Basket (2022/2022) by ElisaOriginal Source: Carakana

Not Giving Up

"I am Elisa and I started weaving this year through Carakana. I have been looking for a job since I finished high school, to no avail. I was very discouraged since I missed an opportunity to go to college as my mother couldn't afford it. But now, I am saving up for my education."

White With Black Weaved Basket (2022/2022) by DorothyOriginal Source: Carakana

A Place Of Solace

"I am Joyce, a single mother of two. I am from an abusive marriage and leaving was the hardest thing, I feared that he would kill me. Weaving has always been a place of solace for me. Carakana trained us on value addition, it has been a breakthrough for us financially."

Assorted Sling Baskets (2022/2022) by DorothyOriginal Source: Carakana

Light At The End Of The Tunnel

"I am Dorothy, a single mother of one. I had given up on weaving and was working as a house help . When Carakana came to train us, I finally saw a light at the end of the tunnel, I resumed weaving. I can now ensure my child has a good education because I can now afford it."

White,Orange With Gold Weaved Basket (2022/2022) by SaidaOriginal Source: Carakana

Restored Hope

"I am Saida,  I never thought I would stitch for a living. After college, I have never gotten a job in the last six years. I went into depression but since I joined Carakana and learned how to stitch, my hope has been restored as I have a source of income."

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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