Spend a while with the ladies from the unique Zambian business as they handcraft their beautiful accessories, capturing elements of the African bush and way of life whilst investing in the conservation of the South Luangwa. The Zambia-based jewellery company welcomes visitors to their workshop to see where the magic happens. Visitors have the opportunity to watch as they create these unique pieces made from materials such as snare wire, old Zambian coins or guinea fowl feathers, to name a few. Located near Mfuwe airport, the workshop is easily accessed, and Mali and Smudge, the company’s dogs, are there waiting for your arrival.
Mulberry Mongoose only sells vibrant jewellery made by local designers, famed for the items made from snare wire recovered during anti-poaching patrols in the park. Of all pieces sold, $5 goes to anti-poaching efforts, and the company has raised almost $93,000 so far.
Kate, the company’s designer, moved from London to the Zambian bush and began creating jewellery and thus, Mulberry Mongoose was born, using a name partly inspired by the banded mongoose. The social cohesiveness of these mongooses reflects the level of social care the business is ruthlessly working towards. Mulberry is a distinctive English fruit colour, and a reminder of Kate's roots and her love of fashion.
Illegal poachers have laid out over 10,000 snares in South Luangwa, wounding or killing more than 160 elephants, 25 lions and 20 hyenas since 2005. Mulberry Mongoose works closely with Conservation South Luangwa (CSL) and Zambian Carnivore Programme (ZCP) who provide Kate with snare wire that has been removed from the national park.
Conservation South Luangwa started 15 years ago and is now a team of 75, mainly law enforcement personnel, that exists to help protect Zambia’s wildlife by stopping poachers and eradicating wildlife trafficking.
Zambian Carnivore Programme is a Zambian NGO dedicated to conserving large predators and the ecosystems they live in through a combination of conservation actions, conservation science, and education.
Snaring is wildlife’s silent killer, which quietly kills thousands of animals in the Luangwa Valley annually. CSL and ZCP try to combat this by deploying regular anti-snaring patrols to remove snares from the bush and by rescuing snared animals. Mulberry Mongoose transforms their materials from something brutal into something beautiful. With the sale of each piece of jewellery money is donated back to funding more patrols; the same instrument set down to destroy wildlife is created into a tool to ensure their future.
All aspects of conservation of the South Luangwa National Park needs on going support as the quality of life and operation of the surrounding communities is underpinned by the health of the unique ecosystems. This is why Mulberry Mongoose do what they do – and to see them in action is an exceptional experience.
This is ethical jewellery that supports local communities and saves local wildlife. If you want an adventure and meaningful memories, visit their shop and workshop. Or simply buy online and help raise money for the local communities.
For more information visit their website www.mulberrymongoose.com/
The last three years have brought significant success with large sums donated to fund critical anti-snare patrols in the South Luangwa Valley. Mulberry Mongoose has even had celebrity supporters including former U.S. President Bill Clinton, Richard Branson, Sting and Leo DiCaprio, who all sported a Mulberry Mongoose snare bracelet.