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2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit

BeadforLife

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Economic Development, International, International Economic Development, Microfinance

Mission: BeadforLife creates sustainable opportunities for women to lift their families out of extreme poverty by connecting people worldwide in a circle of exchange that enriches everyone.

Results: Over the last eleven years we have accomplished a lot: we have our pilot program, Beads to Business, which has facilitated the creation of nearly 3,000 small businesses; our Girls Education program, where hundreds of girls have attended school that would have otherwise been out of reach; we launched an agricultural initiative, teaching rural women farming practices; and finally, our Street Business School, giving women the opportunity to start businesses sooner and with less capital.

Target demographics: Women living in extreme poverty

Geographic areas served: Uganda, Africa

Programs: Enterpreneurial & Agro-Business Training Girls Education

Community Stories

33 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Mary363

Client Served

Rating: 5

I love the beads. They are colorful and unique. I have bought tons for myself and for gifts. But more than the beads is the story behind them. I wear them proudly, knowing I am supporting a woman to possibly educate herself and grow her own business. I also love the shea butter soap.

Client Served

Rating: 4

BeadforLife provides high quality hand-crafted jewelry and accessories. The jewelry is very colorful and original. I bought a number of items as gifts.

Rachel147

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

BeadforLife is an incredible organization! Many people rave about their jewelry and shea products but what they are doing is much. much more than that. BeadforLife provides entrepreneurial training to women in Uganda, inspiring and equipping them to become successful entrepreneurs.

Many organizations that do work like them are for-profit companies, but not BeadforLife! They reinvest everything back into their programs to help even more women! I wish there were more organizations like them!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Bead for Life is an incredible organization with wonderful products!

1 Danny16

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is truly one exceptional company. Their mission is simple and impactful. Being a woman myself, I am always supportive of organizations looking to help empower women to succeed in life through their own hard work and perseverance. It is great to know that when you donate/purchase products from this organization, your money is really being used and not wasted/lost in the abyss. I personally participated in Live Below the Line this year and my donations went straight to this great company. Great great organization that I am lucky to have been involved with.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Beadforlife impresses me. Their social enterprise business model works. The story is great - giving women a path to independence and strength. The product is strong. The price point is right on! I work in nonprofit leadership and have been in the sector most of my life. I'd love to see into the inner workings but from this donor/customer's standpoint, I think it's brilliant!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

All my experiences with products from Bead for Life have been excellent. I wear my bracelets and necklaces often. They are beautiful and comfort. I was also delighted by the wonderful soaps and bath products. This organization offers so much, is professionally run and makes you feel good and look good too!

1 Callise F.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I loved the jewellery I received from Bead for Life. It was so colourful!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I co-hosted a bead party with a friend - so easy and so much fun! And people loved the bead jewelry! I not only love the bracelets and necklaces, but also the shea products - the scrub makes my skin incredibly soft, the lip balm fees great, and I love the scent of the body cream and the soap. And to think that just by enjoying all these things I am helping women on the other side of the world! A total win-win!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

BeadforLife is an amazing non-profit working with women in Uganda to provide opportunities to rise out of poverty. This is done through the sale of paper-beaded jewelry made by the women. They are graduated through the program after months of training and empowerment workshops. This graduation model creates lasting impact in the women's individual economic status, and also allows BeadforLife to touch many many lives in Uganda. Wonderful program!

1 Christine85

Client Served

Rating: 5

I love the jewelry and shea products from BeadforLIfe. It is inspiring to me as a young woman to be able to wear something that was handmade by other women who are building a future for themselves and their families, just like I am trying to do. I know I have a much much much easier life in the U.S. than they do in Uganda. But I feel connected. I love how the purchases I have made always arrive with such attention to detail and papers that tell the story of the product. I will choose BeadforLife when looking for a special gift for family, friends, and myself.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Our MOPS group decided to have a Beadforlife party and I'm on the creative team and I headed up the party it was the best thing that I could have done. Beadforlife touch my heart and many other moms in our group as well. I being a crafter myself it just spoke to me and with what Beadforlife is doing for these women and their families is just amazing. They are giving them the tools to live a better life a hand up not a handout. God bless them in all they do today and in the future.

1 Ruth25

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The BEADFORLIFE program dose not give handouts it sets women up to prosper in life with their families. It teaches them how to start making their lives better and gives them an opportunity to go to school and learn more for themselves. And in return their kids learn to do things better also, instead of being beat down all the time. The program is wonderful and has helped a lot of families. Not just individuals. I have several of the Bangle Bracelets. I was given the first one and Loved it and after I read the story of how it was made I have been sold on them every since. I bought the rest and tell everyone I get around about them.

1 Michael137

Board Member

Rating: 5

BeadforLife is thoughful about the way it works with the women in Uganda, always looking for the best approaches to improve their lives. BeadforLife is not about handouts, but rather providing opportunities to the most needy. Puchasing the Beads or Shea products here in North America and Europe directly funds the entrepreneurial training and puts money in their hands. I've been so impressed with the sustainability approach in everything they do

2 Ginger F.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have had a few bead parties over the last couple years. Each one has been a little different. Some that say they have heard of BeadforLife and others are just learning about it. A few people stop and admire the beads and then after a minute or so realize, "They are made of paper! that is amazing." I love the connection I have made with people in telling the BeadforLife story. There are some that get many necklaces. "It's for a good cause" and give them for gifts with a great message in that little sivler tag. Or then just a little girl that can't afford anything else at the craft fair wanders by and spends 20 minutes picking out that one perfect bangle bracelet to give to her mom for her birthday. For me I wear my beads almost everywhere. when people ask or comment I stop and tell the story of the women in Uganda that make these beautiful beads and how they work to change their life and their famiies life. That after they learn the trade they go on to start their own buisnesses. It gives me shivers. Recently I went to the dentists. The last time I was there i had been wearing a 3-strand necklace, and had told the assistant all about the program. As I stepped into the office she greeted me and said "Oh before we start i want to show you..." she went to her bag and pulled out a Katoga long necklace. It made me smile form ear to ear. A lady in the waiting area said "OH taht is gorgeous, so many colors." so before going in for my appointment I left her with a little note in hopes that she too would pass the messag on. If we all tell one person and they tell one person one bead can change a life!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a woman who has held several Bead Parties over the course of the past 4 years I can only say "I love Bead for Life!" This is not your regular "sell from home to earn prizes" type of party. The beads are already bought and paid for by the Bead for Life organization! My Bead Parties help keep the organization doing the great work that it has sustained now for years and years; assisting overwhelmed Ugandan women in getting control of their financial lives and providing training, friendship, and leadership skills so they go from being beggars on the street to successful business women building community and self-sufficiency. You get to contribute to these amazing programs by buying lovely bracelets, necklaces, earrings or shea butter products when you attend or host a Bead for Life "Bead Party." No one can say no to spending $5 on a handcrafted bracelet that is unique because each bead is handmade from paper. Add to that the fact the paper is being reused! Bead for Life is as good as an organization can get! I can see the work that my dollars support! It feels so good!

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Great group , needs to expand. They make a difference in women's lives and future generations.

1 Casey6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Beadforlife is an unbelievable nonprofit organization! Women over in Uganda handmake jewelry from recycled paper. Each individual bead is rolled then strung into either a bracelet or necklace then dip in lacquer and then hung to dry. These beautiful beads are sold world wide and the the proceeds go back to the women in Uganda for food, education, healthcare and so much more. I had recently did a Beadforlife Bead Party. They had sent me a box full of merchandise made by the women in Uganda and my goal was to sell everything in the box! I had several bead parties where I could teach others about how the beads are made as well as the poverty that the people in Uganda live in and how we can make a difference by buying the beads they make! This is one of the most rewarding nonprofit organizations!!!

2 Wendy47

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Love the beads, great range of shapes, colours and ideas on how to wear. Think they are ideal for taking on hols (not expensive so you don't worry about losing them or leaving them in the hotel room!) and great for Christmas presents especially! Very quick to order and receive!

2 Stacey17

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've helped to host four bead shows over the last couple of years. I first found out about this organization in an Avon brochure and after researching and learning more really fell in love with not only what they do + how they help, but their thinking on how to best achieve that help with training, compassion + empowerment. Not only do they help women help themselves and their families as they try to raise themselves up from poverty, but they help those of us that to be a part of this special program find a way to help that cause. We get to become more educated and educated others about global issues and empower ourselves as well to help, be active and be a voice of change for others.