Mama Buci supports over 7000 families in Zambia by providing them with the hives, training and education needed to produce delicious raw honey that has a positive impact on the environment. In order to rebuild and invigorate impoverished communities, education is key, and that’s what is at the heart of the Mama Buci story. Our focus starts with educating the beekeepers and families on how to work with their land to help maintain a healthy eco-system. Over the years we have watched communities, individuals and forests flourish.
Beekeeping has been a popular income-generating activity in Zambia for centuries. However, most of the honey produced is kept in traditional bark hives, which involves a harvesting process that strips the bark from the tree ultimately leading to its death. This not only has a negative impact on the environment but also to the beekeepers income as the bees need to feed off the trees to produce honey.
This all changed however with the introduction of the top bar bee hive which is what we use to create our delicious honey. The top bar hive yields twice the amount of honey than the traditional bark hive and causes absolutely no damage to the trees and surrounding forest. What’s more, is that the hive can last a lifetime if it’s properly maintained compared to the 3 year span of the bark hive. This all means that the beekeeping families can double their income by producing more honey, whilst contributing to a flourishing ecosystem that they can hand down to their children.
Mama Buci’s honey scheme has increased the families average wage of 70p a day to over £1.50 and in some cases much more. This has had a huge impact on the individuals and communities our scheme has reached, and we want to continue to grow to help more people and produce more delicious and natural honey that people can experience over the world.
Pearson was proudly elected by his neighbours to be a Mama Buci mentor, looking after all of the beekeeping families in his area. Pearson has five children and has lived well below the poverty line for his entire life in a simple mud hut with a grass roof.
Through Pearson’s perseverance and admirable work ethic, his area has now grown to be the largest producing region, supervising 300 beekeeping families and 15000 beehives. The income from all of their hard work has allowed them to build new brick houses with metal roofs for their families, keeping them warm and dry through the rainy seasons. Beekeeping has given the community a hope for a better life.
Martha is a mother of 5 from a small village in Northern Zambia. Like most parents in the area, she worked in the charcoal industry to get money for her family. But despite long hours, there was never enough money to give her children the education she wanted for them.
That all changed when she was selected by her Village chief to work with Mama Buci. Since training as a beekeeper Martha now manages 10 hives which produce over 180kg of delicious honey a year. Martha’s income has increased enough to allow her to send her children to school.
Our focus on education is not only targeted at the beekeepers themselves to promote a sustainable environment, but also on building schools so that the children have a path out of poverty. Click here to read about our school project.