Empowering Women 

The empowerment of women is an important issue for us, helping as it does our broader aim of supporting children and education as well as the relief of poverty and distress.

Zambezi Sunrise has established the Tiyese craft group in Livingstone to give ladies the opportunity to support and learn from each other as well as earn much needed money from the sale of craft items that they have made. A second craft group, Kupagwa Ni Lilato, was established in another area of town. Further afield, the Zambezi Empowerment Initiative was set up to assist women near Njoko mission in Barotseland / Western Province. We have also supported Mpekala Women’s Programme, an organisation that supports women in remote rural villages around Sekute.


This group of ladies was established by Zambezi Sunrise Trust in the Linda compound area of Livingstone. They originally used the Linda Sunrise structures, before moving to bigger and more secure accommodation that we had built at nearby Linda Community School. They meet several days a week to get together, share their experience and talent and make a variety of craft items. The money they raise through the sale of their handmade bags, aprons, tablecloths, clothes and rugs supplements their incomes and assists in providing regular meals and education for their children. A portion of the profit from each item sold is put back into the group’s funds to buy more materials and ensure its sustainability. As well as assistance with establishing the group, Zambezi Sunrise has donated three pedal powered sewing machines, together with craft tools and items sourced from our supporters. Tiyese have now achieved official government registration and have opened a group bank account – the first time the ladies have had access to such a facility. Having successfully made the 670 delegate bags for the 2019 Commonwealth Law Conference, the ladies have also sold items that have gone around the world – to visiting volunteers and to Zambezi Sunrise donors who have made requests. During the Coronavirus pandemic their skills were recognised and they received orders from the Ministry of Health for 2,500 face masks for frontline workers. Similar orders were received from WWF, as well as ourselves for the schools we support. Items made by Tiyesa can be found at the Pure Skills shop at the Victoria Falls. Pure Skills have enhanced their abilities by sending four of the ladies on a tailoring course. If you would like an item from Tiyese please get in touch!


Kupagwa Ni Lilato  was established with help from Zambezi Sunrise in the Highlands area of Livingstone. Again, the ladies of this group met to share their experience for the benefit of all of them. They concentrated on making different items from those produced by Tiyese  so that the two groups complimented each other and did not compete for the same sales. Sadly this group had to eventually disperse because of personal circumstances.


This group, in a remote area next to the Zambezi river in rural Barotseland/Western Province, was set up with our assistance in early 2020. Situated near Njoko Mission, the ladies in the surrounding area have great talent in basket making but had no access to a market for their talents. As well as assisting with the foundation of the craft group, we hope to help them obtain sales in Livingstone.



Founded by the irrepressible Sister Immaculata, this programme has branches in several remote rural villages in the Sekute area beyond Livingstone. They are served by very poor roads and are almost inaccessible at times during the rainy season. Ladies there have traditionally been dependant on the (environmentally unfriendly) production of charcoal to supplement their family incomes. The programme has helped them diversify through setting up  craft clubs. Zambezi Sunrise have been able to  assist the latter through the provision of hand powered sewing machines to three village groups. We have also been able to provide examples of craft items made by supporters in the UK for them to examine – and have done the same in reverse.