Odumase-Krobo is a small town with a big history. Nestled in the Manya Krobo District of Eastern Ghana, the town has long been known as the hub of African bead-making - a tradition which stretches back some 4,000 years. More recently, the region has become affiliated with the production of stunning recycled glass beads – many of which we stock right here at The Bead Chest.
Back in 2008, the Minister of Chieftancy and Culture: Mr Asum Ahinsan, backed the bid of a local trading group who put forth their ideas to the government, following the success of the National Ghana Beads Festival of that year. Having monitored the region's increasingly flourishing economy, the group - backed by Mr. Ahinsan, called for funding to develop an International Beads Festival, in the interests of boosting socio-economic welfare and “developing new avenues to the world market”. The overall goal was to demonstrate the increasing popularity of African Beads within Ghanaian culture, particularly among teenagers who were adopting the fashionable belief in “sankofa” (going back to retrieve what you have left behind.) Both Africa, and the rest of the world are seeing new trends emerging, and African Beads and jewelry are a playing a big part.
The Ghana Beads Festival of 2009 was the most successful yet. The Government had played an interactive part in boosting the reputation of the festival, through a combination of promotion and funding. 2009 saw more visitors than ever before, and the decision was taken to make the International 2010 Festival a spectacular exhibition that would attract traders, merchants, tourists and bead-lovers from all over the world.
Following the success of 2009, the Government's Center for National Culture applied to the E.D.F (European Development Fund – a subsidiary of the European Union) for a grant stipulating that an International festival would “promote intercultural dialogue” and “generate new employment, and protect the culture of a thriving region”.
June 2010 paved the way for the organization of Ghana's biggest Bead Festival to date. The response from the call made to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (U.N.W.T.O) further fueled international interest in the festival. With over 200 stalls, and 100 vendors, the 2010 1st International Ghana Beads Festival Week was launched on Friday 22nd October 2010, attracting more visitors and international interest than ever before. Many of the vendors were from the Krobo region, displaying popular beads such as the Fancy Powderglass Krobo Beads and Recycled Glass Beads we have here at The Bead Chest.
The Bead Chest is committed to bridging the avenue between Ghanaian artisans and the international market, thus assisting in the improvement of Ghanaian economy, and preserving a centuries-old culture. We source thousands of products from Ghana, including the ever-popular Multicolor Striped Watermelon Chevron Beads. By buying your Krobo Beads here at The Bead Chest, you are also influencing the economy of Ghana and helping artisans have their creations noticed, by including them in your jewelry creations/ collections. Why not browse our “Ghana Beads” category for inspiration?