Many of us understand just how powerful tiny bees are. They give us deliciously tasty honey and they play a vital role in pollinating our fruit and veg. But not many people realise that beekeeping can also offer young people a pathway out of poverty.
We partnered with global charity Bees for Development to do just that. Bees for Development is a global charity that focuses on using bees as a force for good to address global poverty, climate change and biodiversity loss.
Our work with Bees for Development focuses on the Amhara region in Ethiopia. Here, we help to give people the skills to manage and keep bees, harvest and sell the honey, and reforest degraded land.
Mulu Abeje is just one person to have benefited from this. Mulu is a father of two, who was sent away to work as a shepherd at the age of nine as his parents were in extreme poverty and were unable to send him to school. Without even basic education to teach him how to read and write, Mulu worked as a farm labourer on other people’s land.
After being selected to learn about beekeeping, Mulu was trained and given all the materials he’d need to make his own beehive. Beekeeping has opened up a new stream of income for him, which has enabled him to buy his own bull to plough the land, clothe his children and send them to school. He also hopes to expand his hives in the future too.