Woman to Woman


Our story begins with one courageous woman in 2004. In a chance encounter, our founders met Millie Grace Akena while walking through a Ugandan slum. Millie sat outside of her mud home, rolling beads from strips of paper under the sweltering sun, when Devin Hibbard, Ginny Jordan and Torkin Wakefield stopped to talk with her. Though she struggled to put food on the table, Millie found joy in creating beautiful things with her own hands, and she was determined to build a better future for her family.

For 15 years, women around the world have been connecting through love and empowerment, growing a social enterprise to educate and raise funds to support women’s entrepreneurship training to transform lives.

The Beauty of Beads
The Beauty of Beads

100% NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION

We Empower & Employ Women Artisans

Millie’s spirit was contagious, and she became the inspiration behind BeadforLife: A fair-trade nonprofit that employs women artisans and helps them sell their wares in the export market. Hundreds—and then thousands—of women turned their craftsmanship into higher incomes that sent children to school, paid for medical care and ensured pantries were never empty.

You Have the Power to Empower

Join us to wear our beads and share our story with the world. Your involvement gives women a world away the confidence to change their lives!

 

Our Mission

BeadforLife supports poor women in Uganda and Africa through the sale of jewelry created with recycled paper to educate people in America about deep poverty and offers a pathway for them to make a difference. BeadforLife invests existing and future profits from sales into entrepreneurial training programs for women living in poverty, so they can open small businesses, increase their incomes, and leave poverty behind.

You Have the Power to Empower


Join us to wear our beads and share our story with the world. Your involvement gives women a world away the confidence to change their lives!

Our Mission


BeadforLife supports poor women in Uganda and Africa through the sale of jewelry created with recycled paper to educate people in America about deep poverty and offers a pathway for them to make a difference. BeadforLife invests existing and future profits from sales into entrepreneurial training programs for women living in poverty, so they can open small businesses, increase their incomes, and leave poverty behind.

From Beads to Business


2004

BeadforLife is founded as a non-profit organization, bringing recycled paper bead jewelry to hearts and homes and empowering women to earn income.

2013

Street Business School is launched from our beads-to-business curriculum, teaching women to gain confidence and launch new businesses to transform their lives.

2016

Street Business School’s global expansion is launched, with a goal of reaching 1 million women by 2027.

Today

Street Business School is alive in 10 countries across Africa, and we’ve trained more than 39 NGOs to bring SBS to their communities, reaching 2,028 people.

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