This week I'm so happy to introduce you to a wonderful charity that supports some of the poorest people in the world to become self sufficient through bee keeping, Bees for Development.
You may already know that I am a passionate supporter of bees. My father Roger has kept bees for years and has an incredible wealth of bee keeping knowledge. He breeds bees for other bee keepers and can often be found up a tree catching a swarm or in the garden managing the bees.
With the honey bee in serious danger from intensive farming methods and increased use of pesticides, about five years ago I created a collection, The Honey Bee Collection, dedicated to these magical little insects. It's given me great satisfaction and I continue to work with and support bee charities to encourage the economic, social and environmental benefits that bees bring us all.
Tell Us More About Bees for Development?
We are an international development charity with a perfect nature-based solution to poverty and loss of biodiversity around the world. Based in Monmouth, South Wales, with a small team of professional people, we make life better with bees for some of the poorest people in the world.
We give people training in beekeeping, work with communities marginalised by disability and or gender, we regenerate habitats for pollination, connect farmers and beekeepers, plant trees, campaign against pesticides, engage school children, all the while working with strong local partner organisations.
Can You Give Me Some Examples Of Your Work?
We help people like Tigared living in northern Ethiopia, orphaned and uneducated, now married with 3 children, to become a beekeeper and develop a livelihood, meaning she can afford to send her children to school. She intends for them to have a brighter future.
We work with local partners to train beekeepers who can take the skills and resources to remote areas so that honey becomes a reliable source of income, not a poached commodity taken from protected forests where entry is restricted. We work with communities to enable access.
We work with people like Stephen connecting beekeepers with farmers so that the benefits of keeping bees and increased pollination in areas of bountiful flora are enjoyed. Our cashew projects increased their yields by 50% in a year.
We work with communities where there are marginalised people, struggling to access ways to earn a living. Visual impairment is not a barrier to beekeeping. Bees change people’s lives.
We have created a Buzz Club for schools in Ghana to introduce beekeeping into schools, bringing on the next generation of caretakers.
We provide training, support, digital resources and monthly publications on international beekeeping practices for all our beneficiaries and subscribers worldwide.
Everything we do benefits the environment. Every project we commit to supports biodiversity. Everyone we work with becomes a champion of their local habitat.
Are You Active In the UK?
Yes, in the UK, we train people in sustainable beekeeping. We endeavour to change policies on pesticides and we have made Monmouth into a Bee Town!
We raise funds, attend major awareness raising events and we create partnerships with corporates who see what we do and realise the impact.
Our founder and director, Dr Nicola Bradbear, is a leading authority on bees across the world.
Make a Bee Line To The Shop In Monmouth!
Our Bee shop in Monmouth is a haven for all things bee related from jewellery to every conceivable type of honey (almost), with a strong local flavour and emphasis on supporting small business.
Our Helen Round range is enduringly popular.
It fits in beautifully amongst the Hogben Pottery, Thorne Bee Houses (all the proceeds of which go directly to Bees for Development), mead, bee based cosmetic range and beeswax candles both from the UK and Uganda, sourced from the areas where we work.
Please do come and visit us when you are in the area, we'd love to meet you!
Tell Us How Bee Keeping Is Sustainable
We train people to use sustainable methods that have been tried and tested over generations in their locations, promoting the use of natural materials.
Care of the honey bee colonies, bee populations and habitat are central to our training so that each beekeeper becomes a caretaker of their environment. The success of their enterprise depends upon the care they take.
As an organisation, Bees for Development promotes sustainability and good beekeeping practices.
We encourage everyone to:
- Garden without pesticides, plant for bees
- Re-use, Recycle and Repurpose
- Take part in the global campaign to alleviate poverty and promote biodiversity by donating to Bees for Development.
You can find out more on our website or you can call us in Monmouth to talk about what we do in even more detail.
Thank You Bees for Development!
I want to thank you for all the work you are doing, both in the UK and abroad to support individuals to become caretakers of their environment and to help people to create meaningful work through bee keeping.
Please do support Bees for Development in their work by looking after the Bees in and around your environment.
We are funding a donation for Bees for Development for every Bee Stationery Gift Set sold, so if have a bee lover in your life, this might be the perfect gift for them - or treat yourself!
If you, like me, love Bees, don't hesitate to take a look at our Honey Bee Collection. With Bread Bags, Bowl Covers, Tea Towels, Napkins, Placemats, Books, Sponges, Pencils, Glasses Cases, Pouches, Bag Carriers, Cushions, Lampshades and Throws - there really is something for everyone!
If you have any questions or comments about this article please feel free to get in touch with us, and do please post pictures of your purchases in your homes or any questions on our social media pages; find us on Facebook or Instagram.
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