With their earnings from crafting jewelry, many women invest in education for their children and themselves. They also have access to subsidized items like smokeless stoves that make their homes safer and more comfortable. Because our Artisan Partners have access to a global market, they are able to preserve cultural traditions of crafting jewelry from natural materials sustainably harvested from the rainforest.
Nancy is a hardworking mother of five. She started selling jewelry from a mat in the crowded marketplace of Otovalo, but sales were slow. She and her husband, Carlos, struggled and eventually became homeless. The financial stress was painful for her family and put strain on Nancy and Carlos’ relationship. One day, a woman approached Nancy in the market and offered to include her pieces in her fair trade jewelry line, opening up Nancy’s products to a global market. Nancy readily agreed.
The family has since built a small home with electricity, running water, and linoleum floors. Better still, the home has grown to include a workshop that employs eight other women! Having a thriving business has strengthened Nancy’s relationship with her husband, and has provided life-changing opportunity for their family and community.