Hellen Nkaissery lands lucrative govt job

The government adopted Hellen Nkaissery's brainchild into a National Flagship project.

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Hellen Nkaissery

The widow of the late Interior CS Joseph Nkaissery, Hellen has been appointed as the chairperson of the Ushanga Kenya Steering Committee by Sports and Culture CS Amina Mohamed.

According to a Gazette Notice published on Friday, October 1, Hellen will lead the implementation of the Ushanga Kenya Initiative and set the framework to run the initiative.

The Ushanga Kenya Initiative is a National Government flagship project to empower pastoralist women involved in beadwork by transforming their traditional art into tradable commodities for significant economic benefit and sustainable livelihoods.

The Ushanga Initiative is structured to empower these women by building the beadwork manufacturing and distribution ecosystem to cater for the entire production value chain from collection of beads, assemblage, branding, marketing, sale, investment and industrial scale.

The steering committee will also include Council of Governors CEO, Culture and Heritage PS, Tourism PS, Co-operatives PS, Gender PS and two County Secretaries nominated by the CoG.

Ushanga Kenya shall be implemented in Baringo, Kajiado, Marsabit, Narok, Samburu, Turkana and West Pokot.

The initiative was a brainchild of Nkaissery’s wife which was adopted by the government and launched in December 2020.

Ushanga Kenya has already completed a design and production centre to incubate the resulting businesses.

The initiative is in the final phase of establishing infrastructure for e-commerce that will optimize business performance for the cooperatives and enhance sustainability.

The tools and beads procured will be distributed to 139 cooperatives cutting across the 7 Counties.

The Government will ensure that the cooperatives can access raw materials, especially the beads, at a reasonable and affordable price.

Our aim is to ensure that the exceptional skill and craft in Kenya’s beading industry is recognized, respected, and traded globally from Paris to Milan, Toronto to New York, Tokyo to Seoul, Dakar to Johannesburg, Cancun to Havana and in all the fashion capitals of the world,” CS Amina said during the launch in 2020.

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