"We would have died beggars, but God gave us a talent."
Gonga Waya means "hit a wire" and make something in swahili. These extremely talented people have come together with one purpose: to improve their lives through their God-given talents. Through the creativity and leadership of a man named Abel in Kenya, these men and women are having changed lives! They hand craft beautiful frames, utensil sets and more using mostly recycled products.
Kigen, Christina and Caroline with the Gonga Waya artisans April 2012
Abel has come up with a way to hit the wire so it becomes flat and ready. He made a perfect template for creating the frames - large and small, using wood and nails. They wrap the aluminum wire around these templates, bead them and in a matter of minutes, they are able to make beautiful frames!
The Heavenly Treasures team has been able to visit with Gonga Waya annually. They have grown from one person - Abel - to about 6-8 artisans on a consistent basis during the year. Last Christmas Abel was able to hire up to 40 artisans working around the clock to prepare all the orders they had! When you walk through the markets of Kenya, you will see Abel's frames all over - evidence that his vision and leadership has helped change hundreds of lives.
He has been able to train artisans so they can have their own businesses and provide for their families. They have now expanded into making keychains, trays, spoon sets, salt and pepper shakers and more! He has a heart for his community and wants to see change happen. He has been doing well in his business - but he chooses to live on a certain means in order to help change the future of those he meets.
Caroline was able to talk with his wife, Liz (pictured far left with her daughters, GW Artisan Madge on the right and her niece) she told us how their relationship with Heavenly Treasures has changed their lives drastically - before they had maybe one meal a day and no furniture in their house and now she says they have moved to a better area/house, furniture, 3 meals a day and their children can go to a good school.
We were also able to have a time of prayer and also fellowship with them. We handed out lollipops to their staff and they just LOVED it! Seeing their eyes light up when they ate the candy was priceless. We were able to hang out and talk with them, sharing stories of life, love, struggle, triumph and God's redeeming love. Please pray for this amazing family and amazing business Gonga Waya designs so that they would be change agents in their community and families!