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Empowering women beekeepers to make a sustainable living – Oxfam in PNG

If there’s one thing we’ve learnt working with vulnerable communities over the last 60 years it’s that helping people gain financial independence is the best way to kick poverty and inequality.

So we’ve been empowering women in the highlands of Papua New Guinea to make a sustainable living through beekeeping.

In partnership with community organisations and local businesses, together we’re providing training, kits and market solutions to women like Onano.

Onano John is a bee farmer who got her start after attending a series of training workshops offered by Oxfam partner, New Guinea Fruit Co LTD.  The mother of three young children jumped at the opportunity to learn new ways of earning an income.

“I attended three trainings but I had no bee beehives so Sally [Managing Director of New Guinea Fruit] saw that I was interested so she gave me a box which started me off,” recalls Onano.

“I was excited when I got the box. I took it home, made a stand for my first hive. I bought my veil, smoker, hive tool. Every morning and afternoon, I would check that one hive. When I saw that there were many bees and were going to produce honey, I bought another box, wax, spray. I was excited about farming bees.”

Photo: Patrick Moran/OxfamAUS

Onano’s commitment and enthusiasm paid off and soon enough she was harvesting her own honey and reinvesting her earnings to establish her own farm.

“I am very happy with New Guinea Fruit Company because the company gave me that one box which I looked after and grew fast my bee farming. I earned a huge income from the sale of honey. I’m happy because that money helped me and my family.


How you can help

You change the life of someone like Onano today by making a general donation to Oxfam — helping people grow more food, educate their children, and lead healthy, productive lives.

Donate now