Tea Tree in Kenya

Article and pictures by Emily Wrigth world traveler & Founding Executive over Sales & Marketing at doTERRA International.

Kenya has my heart. My whole heart.

Tea Tree in Kenya

I’d like to introduce you to Melle. She lives in Lunga Lunga near the Tanzania border. This is one of the poorest regions of Kenya where average family income is less than $1 per day. There is no industry. The residents are squatting on land that does not belong to them in hopes they won’t be discovered. They don’t exist in the eyes of the government because they are undocumented.

These are beautiful, hard working people who are doing their best to provide and survive.

We have discovered that this ecosystem is perfect for growing certain aromatic plants like Tea Tree. We developed a commercial farm to see which plants grow well in the area, but our intent for doing this was never to be “farmers.” Rather we wanted to learn from our mistakes so we could set the residents of Lunga Lunga up for success.

Tea Tree in Kenya

We offered people like Melle an opportunity to grow Tea Tree for us. There was no upfront cost or risk. We helped her plant the starts we provided and taught her how to care for the plants until maturity. Six months later, the crop was ready for harvest. The doTERRA/Fair Oils team showed up to teach her how to harvest the leaves and to weigh them before taking the Tea Tree leaves to our distillery.

Melle is the mother of eight children. She has three grandchildren. Their diet has been primarily maize (corn). It is not uncommon for them to go days without eating because there isn’t enough food to go around.

Imagine her pride when we showed her the compensation for her labor of six months. It was more than she ever dreamed of making in a lifetime. She squealed and asked if she could grow even more plants next time. Because Kenya offers a 12-month growing season, she can repeat this process every six months.

We have worked with Melle to get her documented with the government and to set up a savings account for her. We teach her how to budget her money and will make it possible for her to become a land owner in three years.

We are doing this for Melle and thousands of others. What a gift it is to empower such beautiful people and give them a chance to rise up. 

Tea Tree in Kenya

Article and pictures by Emily Wrigth world traveler & Founding Executive over Sales & Marketing at doTERRA International.

Support the work doTerra is doing across the globe by becoming a doTerra member. Enjoy beautiful and exceptional essential oils produced with appreciation and love.

Author: Julien

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