Heavenly Treasures' partnership with the Free Hands co-operative of Viva Bolivia began in 2005. Viva Bolivia started in Cochabamba, Bolivia as a ministry of First Free Methodist Church in Seattle, Washington. Since that time, we have grown into a full-fledged 501(c)(3) public charity and are now supporting a number of ministries throughout Bolivia.
"We started with little more than a dream and a vision of how we could provide leadership for today and hope for tomorrow in Bolivia. Thanks to the generosity of four supporting churches and numerous friends and family members, we have had our best year yet in terms of the financial stability of Viva Bolivia!" To learn how you can partner with us, visit: http://www.vivabolivia.org/support.
FREE HANDS - A fresh start for women from prison and their children
Free Hands (or Manos con Libertad) is a co-operative of prisoners from San Sebastian Women's prison in Cochabamba, Bolivia and those who are on probation outside. Currently there are 15 prisoners and 25 ex-prisoners that are members with between them roughly 80 children. The women make a large variety of hand crafted products to sell.
Many of the women at San
Sebastián are trapped by terrible poverty and a cycle of
ever-increasing debt and for reasons related to this are, or were,
imprisoned. Through a partnership with FreeHands (a Latin Link
ministry), the prisoners produce a range of hand-crafted goods.
FreeHands aims to
empower its members to enjoy a fresh start in life by learning a
trade and earning a fair wage with which they can support their
families. Furthermore, through this work FreeHands hopes that the
women will not only break the bonds of debt, but will also reclaim a
sense of dignity and self-worth for themselves and for their
Products from this project include sewing kits, hand bags, hand-quilled greeting & Christmas cards, scarves, pencil cases, aprons & potholders and more.
To learn more about their ministry, see their video below: