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Kwangware is one of the largest slums on the outskirts of Nairobi, Kenya with more than 400,000 people, most of them living on less than $1 a day;  65% are children and youths.  The Kawangware Street Children and Youth Project (KSCYP) was founded in 2002 to create social and economic opportunities for at risk children and youth.  KSCYP has a micro-business which employs youth in the community to make boutique bags out of recycled paper.  Seventy of the oldest boys and girls make and sell these decorative bags to earn their daily income, and increase their vocational skills. The handles, which are hand made from banana fibers, are outsourced to local mothers who are single widows.

Director of KSCYP says, “The clientele and increasing market for the bags is so great that we have trouble satisfying the demand.  Our current workshop is so small that we are forced to use corridors and alleys to continue our business.  In the case of rain or very hot sun we cover ourselves with plastic bags for protection. More youths want to join us but I always have to turn them away because of space. It breaks my heart to do so. We do the best we can.”  

Locally designed pictures, logos and sayings are screen printed onto the paper.  Buy these beautiful, inexpensive and decorative African bags from KSCYP and help feed children and support a community.