Imagine smashing rocks into gravel all day with a baby on your back, earning barely enough money to feed your children one meal a day. For Ugandan refugee women who fled their villages in Northern Uganda to escape violence and abductions from a war that has continued for over 20 years, this was their reality BEFORE they learned to make recycled paper beads. To learn more about the women who participate in our project, please click here.
The young women who work in the artisan group in Ecuador have escaped or been rescued out of brothels. Because of this, it is not safe for us to share their names or pictures. However, we want you to understand the type of situations these brave young women, many of whom are young mothers, have overcome so we have received permission to share one of their stories here. To learn more about the young women who participate in our project, please click here.
In Rwanda, basket-weaving is a tradition that has been handed down for generations. The women who make the Rwandan Peace Baskets are survivors of the 1994 Rwandan genocide and represent both tribes that killed each other during the Genocide when 1 million people were killed in only 100 days. Working alongside one another, they are building peace and trust for the future in accordance with the Rwandan saying "If you really knew me, you wouldn't have killed me." To learn more about the women who participate in our project, please click here.
Naturally, poverty, oppression and injustice are not only found in less developed nations... they are found on our own streets in our own cities. Through our work in Charlotte, NC, we have met women who are striving to leave the lifestyle of exploitation, get back on their feet after living in a homeless shelter and vulnerable young women who need the opportunity to develop confidence and life skills to avoid falling victim to the insidious predators of poverty. To learn more about the women who participate in our project, please click here.
Unsafe communities caused by poverty, drugs and corruption combined with a lack of work has driven hundreds of thousands of people from Mexico and Honduras to immigrate to the US, most often, illegally. As a result, communities across these and other Latin American countries are crumbling as families fall apart because children are raised with a missing parent. The nearly 68,000 children detained at the US - Mexico border are most often children who are desperately trying to find their missing mom or dad in the US. The opportunity for fair labor and community transformation that our Community Collection partners provide is keeping families together as they are able to earn adequate income to properly feed and educate their children. To learn more about the women who participate in our project, please click here.