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Meet the women of Ilha Blue

Atija - Café Azulejo Maiassa - Café Azulejo

Catiza - Café Azulejo

Atija heads up the kitchen team at Café Azulejo, located at Ilha Blue. She oversees all the preparations for the exceptional seafood lunches for the Ilha Blue dhow trips. She is head cook and coordinates all the delicious offerings at Café Azulejo. And leads the team who provide the 'stand out' Hamburgers do Peixe Street Food in the late summer afternoons. Atija also creates your sparkling cocktails onboard the dreamy Sunset Sail.

Maiassa meets and greets you when you arrive at Café Azulejo. She is Head waiter and Barista. Under the guidance of Atija she also prepares fresh baked cakes and whips up the famous fruit smoothies.

Catiza is Junior waiter and is quickly learning every aspect of café life. Her current favourite is frothing the milk for a fluffy cappuccino.

Samira - Orampelela Snorkeling and Marine Conservation

Samira first started at Ilha Blue as a guide and a member of the Café Azulejo team. Her passion for all things aquatic fuelled her enthusiasm to set up 'Orampelela' (swimming/snorkeling) to teach children and adults to snorkel, to inspire in them a love of the marine environment and encourage marine conservation. Samira will very soon graduate from University Lúrio with a Bachelor's degree in International Relations and Community Development. She also coordinates the Women guides group and is a founding member of Axinene Ari Vava Women's Arts and Crafts Collective.

Axinene Ari Vava - Women's Arts & Crafts Collective

Axinene women's collective was formed during the pandemic and is still going strong.

"We are a bold and proud, intergenerational women's collective based at Ilha Blue, producing textiles enriched with our cultural heritage. Every piece is made with pure joy; imbued with story, dance and song. Using natural plant dyes, upcyclable and locally available materials, we develop boutique collections of textiles and products that are Ilha-unique"

Women guides group

On Ilha de Moçambique traditionally guides are male but it doesn't need to stay that way; there's no cultural or other reason why women can't guide visitors around the island. Initially we recruited 7 female guides and once training got underway another 4 joined the group. This is ground breaking has generated a lot of excitement.

The training program is innovative with a focus on creativity and skills acquisition. One of the first skills was learning to ride a bicycle, something very few women have had the opportunity to do. Bikes are important, they provides better mobility and has the added advantage of making the women more visible as they power along through the narrow streets of Makuti Town and Stone Town. Stay tuned to follow their progress!


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