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Mkeka baskets – The Making Of



Palm leave baskets from Kajire, Sagalla hills.

The ladies of Kideloni Women’s Group live in Kajire and weave palm leaves into baskets. Kajire is a relatively new settlement, about 50 years old, and lies at the base of Sagalla hill near Voi town. Most inhabitants are Duruma, which is one of the smaller sub-tribes of the Mijikenda who live in Kenya’s coast province.

People in Kajire have limited access to water, and, like most Mijikenda, rely on subsistence farming. Unfortunately there is insufficient rainfall in Kajire, so crops often fail.

In October 2012 the ladies of Kideloni started weaving baskets together as a women’s group, to generate an income to improve their lives and to earn money to send their children and/or grandchildren to school. Weaving this type of baskets goes a long way back in history and is a tradition of the Mijikenda tribe.

Watch the video below to know how these baskets are made!