From Manyattas to skyscrapers

One early November morning, three representatives from the Amboseli Oltome Nadupo Women Group travelled from Imbirikani in Amboseli to Nairobi to attend the 40TH Africa Tourism Association (ATA) Conference at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre (K.I.C.C). The Africa Travel Association (ATA) is the leading global trade association promoting travel and tourism to Africa and strengthening intra-Africa partnerships.

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ATA membership comprises African governments, their tourism ministers, tourism bureaus/boards, airlines, cruise lines, hotels, resorts, tour operators and travel agents among others. The three day conference helped expose the women to relevant established businesses and companies, a scenario that would not have been possible were it not for this programme. They also rubbed shoulders with tour operators, business executives, conservationists and other leaders in the industry.

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The exhibition stand of the Oltome Nadupo women attracted a lot of interest not only due to the story behind it (the group is comprised mostly of widows and elderly women) but also because they had striking products on sale. In fact they managed to make the highest amount of sales thus far from selling beaded belts, bracelets, cat/dog collars and beaded jackets. They travelled back to Amboseli believing that despite their disadvantaged beginnings and the difficult circumstances that they may have faced their dreams are still valid and the sky is indeed the limit.

 

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