In the outskirts of Antigua, Guatemala these 3 different women's groups who have all received small business loans from World Vision International. They are comprised of women from the Mayan Tribe. These women are heirs of the long line of weavers and embroiderers. They come from very rural areas in Guatemala and exist off of very little income. Their main product is the Wipil - The large pieces of woven fabric,
which they hand weave and create beautiful designs in them, eventually
becoming their blouses. After many years, these women purchase blouses
from friends and nearby families and sew the material into small items;
wallets, bags, totes, hair bands, etc. Our hopes are they can make more
smaller items for greater sales on a more regular basis!
Our Retail Supervisor, Christine Mossman, was able to visit Guatemala and the women from Quetzal Crafts. Here's what she experienced:
When we walked into one of the houses, two women were sitting in the yard weaving table runners – the most common item for sale in Antigua. But then they showed us all their items: purses and bags of all shapes, sizes, and designs, pouches, notebooks, table runners, and much more. As they were showing us their things, they were also telling and explaining to us how they had made everything – I could tell how proud they were about everything. It was so incredible to see where the products come from that we sell in our store in Glendora; especially knowing that these specific women’s lives will be changed when we are able to sell their things. But even more than knowing all that, seeing the look on their faces when they saw how much we were buying, made me even more excited.
When the boxes came in from Guatemala and we opened them, I could see the faces behind those specific products. I have always known and heard stories about the artisans behind all the products we sell, but now I have my own specific story about the people we work with in Guatemala. And now every time we sell one of those women’s products I know that those women will be so grateful when they receive their next, hopefully larger, order."
Ricardo Canu - About 2 hours outside of Antigua, a talented man
named Ricardo Canu resides. He has been painting for many years and has
supported his family from his art. Recently he just completed college
courses and is now a lawyer. He sells his items to souvenir shops
throughout Guatemala City and Antigua.