Akisa is an environmental scientist and a fashion designer. She is pushing for the restoration of Kenya’s lost green cover by planting indigenous trees. She runs the initiative through Vazi Afriq. This is an African fashion and design company that plants one tree for every Sh1,000 cloth she sells. Akisa planted her first $10-sale tree in 2018. “We plant the trees April of every year because of the long rains. It is easier to plant them during the rainy season,” She said.
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Akisa, who comes from Aboloi village in Teso North sub county, also distributes the seedlings to local farmers who supply her company with acacia trees. She uses the trees to make removable stools and lap tables. The farmers who receive the native tree species from Vazi Afriq for planting in turn supply her company with papyrus reeds. She uses the reeds for producing lampshades, candleholders, picnic baskets and magazine racks.
Challenges faced by Akisa
Akisa says that one of the challenges the world faces is environmental abuse which if left unregulated, may result in adverse effects on humanity. She says it is the duty of every Kenyan to conserve the environment. It is vital in protecting wildlife, maintaining a healthy, functional ecosystem and preventing the extinction of some animal species.
The entrepreneur says that her company relies on local raw materials, such as the acacia trees. She says that they should be replenished whenever cut. “Some people really get shocked, especially when I am in the village. People see no connection between trees and clothes. But I explain until they understand that it is a good course,” Akisa said. Her inspiration is the late Kenyan environmentalist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Maathai. Former BBC senior manager David Attenborough, also inspires her alot.
She urged the youth to follow their passion and cultivate a culture that enables them to engage in activities they do with ease and enjoyment.