Today I met with 3 women´s groups from the area of Panajachel. First I talked to the director/representative of each group and explained what the mission of Education And More was and how we purchase handcrafts at fair trade prices. I explained that “fair trade” simply meant that we pay them a fair daily wage for their work and then re-invest any profits from our sales back into their communities, their schools and children. We do not sell handcrafts to make a large profit but do it to give artisans an outlet to sell their work and help our work with the schools.
Vicenta Zaput is a delightful young lady who has organized a group of women in the village of Chuacruz. There are 20 women in this organization –some making jewelry others weaving on backstrap and foot pedal floor looms. She showed me beautiful necklaces and bracelets of excellent workmanship and quality.
Maria Elania and Julia were the directors of the group “Mujeres Ana Lizadores” from the village of El Tablon, a small village near Panajachel. There are 5 women in this women´s group that makes jewelry, weavings and many types of intricately beaded and embroidered items.
We then met with Dora, the director for the group “Pana Joyeria” located in Panajachel. They are a group of 10 women and they make all types of jewelry.
We purchased lots of jewelry and will have it on our website about mid May and you will be able to purchase it and help these women earn an income. Before our trip we had learned that these women had very few needles and no thimbles so we put out the need to our supporters and received many thimbles and packets of needles plus thread, scissors, magnifying glasses and other simple sewing supplies to bring to Guatemala for them. They were really astonished to receive such gifts and were extremely happy! Thank you to our generous supporters. We will continue to colelct sewing supplies for other groups.
Our trip has been a profound blessing and time after time we are shown that the Lord has guided our path and gone before us!