Sasa Designs by the Deaf (Kenya) launched in 2011 with the goal of providing job training and sustainable, fair-wage employment to women with impaired hearing. Many of the craft components are sourced locally—everything from recycled glass beads to handcrafted brass chains to and bone and horn details—so that the artisans can see how their creations directly impact the local economy, not just their own families.
Susan Jepkemoi had been unemployed her whole life and struggled as a 24-year-old single mother of a toddler son; Sasa gave her new skills and a sense of pride. […] Virginia Wanjiku‘s father was jobless and couldn’t afford to keep her in school; now she can save for her three daughters’ educations.
Arte Comasagua (Comasagua, El Salvador) was founded in 2003 by local architect Ana Rosa Graf, who decided to bring economic growth to her home community, which had been devastated by a 7.7 magnitude earthquake in 2001, by creating a market for handicrafts using local wildflowers. Arte Comasagua started out with a small group of women artisans determined to support their families and build better futures; for most, the income generated by their craft is the primary means of support, enabling them to pay for food, housing, and medical care.
Through her work, an artisan named Roxana has been able to get medical care for a daughter who suffers from debilitating Guillain-Barre disease. After two years of treatment, her daughter is 80% cured and plans to return to school to become a chef. She credits her mother’s positive attitude and hard work with helping her keep her dreams alive during her illness.
You are God’s artist.
His miracles, you nurse, you
nurture with your hands.