On this Valentine’s Day, we're excited to share this heartwarming story of Anna and Ruth, two of Mifuko’s weavers and ambassadors of Mifuko Trust brought together by shared passions and unwavering support for one another.
In the heart of Mavindu, a friendship blossomed eight years ago when Ruth relocated from Nairobi to her new rural home in the Mavindu area. The paths of Ruth and Anna crossed at the Mavindu market centre, where Ruth had set up her small hairdressing business. Living in the same neighbourhood of the Mbooni Hills further strengthened their bond, and Anna soon became a loyal customer of Ruth's hairdressing services.
Basket weaving has served as the common thread connecting the two women as Anna encouraged Ruth to join the Mifuko basket weaving activities. Despite Ruth's initial lack of experience, Anna took her under her wing and guided her through the learning process. Today, both excel in crafting high-quality baskets and serve as chairwomen of their respective weaving groups, consulting each other to ensure smooth operation of their groups.
Friendship, for Ruth and Anna, goes beyond the creative realm. As middle-aged women, they find solace in sharing life experiences and supporting each other in times of need. Living as neighbours enables regular meetings as well, and they often meet at least three times a week. Alongside their weaving sessions, they actively engage in local social activities such as merry-go-rounds and welfare groups - activities that have significantly enriched their friendship.
Now, after eight years, Ruth and Anna not only share a passion for weaving but also hold key leadership positions within Mifuko Women Development CBO member groups. They both are integral members of the project management committee of projects of Mifuko Trust, with Anna excelling as a trained CLTS Sanitation Champion and Ruth as a trained Agroforestry Ambassador.
Anna and Ruth’s journey showcases how chance encounters can lead to not only lifelong friendships but community involvement: through friendship and collaboration, they've not only enriched each other's lives but also become active contributors to their community.