Maa Enterprise focuses on training women and youth in technical skills required to start businesses.
Maa Enterprise creates pilot projects at The Maa Trust’s HQ to prove concept. Once this is proven, the pilots become demonstration projects which are used to train local women and youth in technical and practical skills that will allow them to set up businesses to address market gaps identified within the Maasai Mara. All technical training is accompanied by a one-week crash course in entrepreneurship skills.
With the assistance from Niagara on the Lake Rotary Club, The Maa Trust installed a demonstration of the hydroponics system at the TMT HQ. This system will be used to train interested community members how to set up and run a hydroponics system. High-end fruit and vegetables can be grown hydroponically and then sold to camps. There is a big market for this as perishable produce does not stay fresh between weekly supply trucks and so camps would wish to buy lettuces, herbs, strawberries, micro-herbs and edible flowers that are produced locally.
The Maa Trust has also set up a small mushroom farm at TMT HQ to be used to demonstrate to community members how to easily grow oyster and button mushrooms for sale to camps.
Elephant Friendly Kitchen Gardens are designed to address malnutrition and create micro-business opportunities within the Mara. Elephant–friendly kitchen gardens ensure that small-scale household-level vegetable production does not negatively affect conservation or cause human-wildlife conflicts. This is done by using vertical grow bags which require a very small protected space instead of plowing fields. Seven pilot elephant-friendly kitchen gardens are already operational in homesteads across the Mara, and are being managed by 62 members of the seven women's groups. These pilots will be used for demonstration purposes for further training in 2022. Spinach, kale and herbs are grown in the vertical grow bags, each of which accommodates 80 plants. A small garden provides more than enough for consumption by the family, and excess can be sold locally to neighbours. Some women are earning 300-700 per day selling greens and herbs to their neighbouring families and camps.
By the Numbers
pilot elephant-friendly kitchen gardens.
of daily earnings selling greens and herbs to their neighbouring families and camp.
spinach, kale and herbs grown in vertical grow bags.