The desire we have for all beneficiaries of the Elimu Sewing Project is for each to be able to drive her own business; to create a new reality after the 2-years-training period. For every girl who is able to establish an enterprise or get employment in the fashion and design industry, we count it as a win for the communities they come from.

We recently paid a visit to White Elephant Sea and Art Lodge and had a chance to interact with the award-winning artist-in-residence and founder, Armando Tanzini. He shared his vision for the Malindi community and his approach to economic empowerment and environmental conservation through art. “I believe that when we uplift the Giriama woman, we uplift the whole community. If our young women get something to do; if they can produce beautiful products to sell, they will have income to sustain themselves and their families.” said Armando, referring to the local Giriama tribe which represents the majority of the population in Coastal Kenya.

“Life begins when you start something, and blooms when you keep doing it.”

In his workshop, he creates remarkable art pieces from recycled materials. He uses everyday materials like fabrics and leather to create bags, mats and various art pieces that can be sold to gain income. His work here in Malindi has been greatly influenced by the East African culture and traditional art. His vision is for an energetic and creative society; and to achieve it he focuses his attention on training young aspiring artists. He has opened his world to the young generation, making room for experimentation and knowledge sharing; inspired by his own experiences and imagination.

Elimu is thrilled to begin working with Armando in creating space for our beneficiaries to learn how to use recycled locally available materials to create designs and products for local and global markets. Of great interest is a project on how to make bags from recycled plastic rugs. He will also be engaging our girls in designing and sewing table mats using simple plastics and fabrics.

Our vision is to integrate our sewing training program with guidance of an artist such as Armando Tanzini to boost the skills and income potential, as well as the creativity, for our sewing graduates. This and other recent partnerships are leading the Elimu Sewing Project to a new dynamic approach in economic transformation for girls in rural Kenya.


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Elimu empowers learners to increase academic and digital literacy, improve school retention and encourage self-sustainability through employment planning and entrepreneurship. 

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