There are many and varied women’s groups which use Butterfly Space, both for lessons and information and also as a place to sell their produce. It is an excellent all encompassing idea that consistently brings the community together in a pro-active way. There are numerous different groups throughout Nkhata Bay doing a variety of things, some independently and some linked to Butterfly.
There are several local tailoring groups who sell their produce here and many local group are up for learning new ideas if you have the expertise. Another group initiated by Hayley sees them making and selling delicious home made peanut butter and there have been nutritional workshops with many different groups over the years. Concentrating upon specific ingredients, like ginger, turmeric, garlic, these tend to be a big cooking session to show people how to incorporate it into their diet. More recent opportunities with groups have seen workshops on samosa s, soap and business entrepreneurship.
In April 2015 we held a Women’s Week here at Butterfly and had a whole week of activities, from making soya milk and fire reducing stoves, to natural medicine, jewellery making and motivational films and talks. it was a brilliant success with over 60 women attending daily and we hope this will let more women know the opportunities and the links that we are trying to offer them. Volunteers can always assist some of the groups as they progress.
Another group that has become a regular as Butterfly Massage. A few of our past volunteers were trained in massage and wanted to help some of the local women here by training them up to start their own business. Twice a week on a Wednesday and Saturday afternoon, the massage ladies come to Butterfly to offer a twenty or forty minute deep tissue massage for just a small cost. By supporting these women, they have been able to start their own business which will continue on long term.
There is also great potential with other established women’s groups to teach them their own product to sell. The motto ‘one village, one project’ will take a longer term commitment from our volunteers who wish to stay for more than three months, but there is massive potential to change livelihoods into the future. Business ideas include producing the following; soap, Rosella tea, sunflower oil and many others which will help the villagers produce and sell at local markets. Whether you want to work on an existing idea or have enough time to do something new, there are plenty of ideas for volunteers to get involved in.
VOLUNTEERS CAN CONTRIBUTE IN THE FOLLOWING WAYS:
- TAILORING GROUP – We are looking for volunteers whom are good at sewing to assist with teaching the group different techniques and new ideas for the items they make to sell. The group would also benefit with help in marketing, selling their produce further a field and simply encouragement and advice with managing their finances.
- KAKUMBI PEANUT BUTTER – Again, with a brilliant product in line, the group generally need help with their admin. Whether you can help with selling their produce to a wider market, and can help with the marketing and managing their finances, the group would be able to benefit from this massively.
- MASSAGE GROUP – Although the ladies are doing very well here, it would be good to promote their business to other villages and businesses to expand their business. Whether you can design posters and spreading the group across Nkhata Bay, this will help the group in the long run.
- NUTRITION WORKSHOPS – We have worked with many established village groups’ workshops on ginger and garlic and other beneficial foods that can be done here at Butterfly. If you can help with cooking up different recipes, showing them how to grow it and enabling them to have some to take away to plant, this offers people a real long term benefit in terms of nutrition.
- THE GROUPS AS A WHOLE – More generally many groups in the area need help with marketing, packaging, business management and sales, so something across groups could be done. Think of new items to produce and work alongside a new group to make it a reality will really make a difference!
If you are interested in volunteering, please see our Volunteer Package page. If you would like to contribute to this project but you are unable to make it over to Malawi, please see our Make A Donation page.