Amazing Photos of Shell Money in the Solomon Islands

Shell money is a traditional form of currency that was used in the Solomon Islands before bank notes were introduced. Some provinces still use shell money today, primarily for ceremonies, settling disputes, and bridal and land payments. It is beautifully crafted from seashells, often consisting of strings of differently colored shell-beads. Visit Kiva's Medium page to see how it's made!

About the author

Nelly Martin

Nelly grew up in Germany and the US, studied in Scotland and has lived and worked in Norway, New York and Singapore. After graduating with a degree in Economics and International Relations from the University of St Andrews, Nelly worked for DNB Bank, primarily in the corporate banking division with a focus on energy finance. After seven years in banking, she has decided to steer her career in a new direction and is pursuing her passion in international development, an interest that took root when she volunteered in Kenya as a student. When Nelly read about the Kiva Fellows Program in the book “The International Bank of Bob”, she was immediately drawn to the idea of setting out on such an assignment. She is curious to learn about the impact of microfinance firsthand and is excited to apply her knowledge and skills in the field when she serves as a Kiva Fellow in the South Pacific.