Dr. Emily Spivak, a physician of Infectious Disease and daughter of the founder Linda Edwards, PhD, went to Uganda to work in a HIV clinic in Kampala, the capital city. Linda accompanied her daughter and volunteered in a non-profit called Uganda Crafts. While Emily worked in an AIDS hospital, she met a lady who asked her to look at her Recycled Paper Jewelry. That same evening the lady came to show Emily and Linda her bracelets and necklaces that she had made. We bought all of the jewelry that the artisan brought to the guest house. The artisan said that she had never seen so much money and that the money would change her life.
We decided to help other women who made Recycled Paper Jewelry The jewelry sales help them to provide medical care for their children, to send them full-time to school, to buy their paper and materials, to have more nutritious food, and to generally have a better Quality of Life. Emily worked with patients not only in a Kampala hospital but also with the AIDS patients in the country side. The children came with their parents to the clinic, for some of them also have AIDS.
Emily is with some boys (above). Often there is a big sister or brother who brings the children to the clinic. The children always seemed to be very happy to be at the clinic. At the Kampala town clinic the children sometimes wait all day, from sun-up to sundown for their turn at the clinic. This pediatric clinic is open every day and the children come once or more a month to receive their AIDS medicine.
In our travels we saw the sunrise over the Nile, and we saw the sunset in Rwanda, and all along the way we saw women who were talented with beading and sewing.
Women of the Uganda Crafts Cooperative make raffia baskets, as well as Paper Beads. Uganda Crafts buys their products by Fair Trade. The women above are raffia weavers. The women weave the baskets according to the orders that the non-profits have received. The artisans that weave the best quality have a better chance to sell their products. All of the ladies above, in their daily colorful garments, are artisans at Uganda Crafts organization.
The Ugandan Nubian women tried to teach Linda to weave raffia but she found that the task was not one for which she had talent!
Linda met the lady artisans (above) of the National Association of Women Organizations in Uganda. NAWOU artisans had a meeting to learn about building a cottage artisan business. NAWOU also helps the artisans sell their products internationally. However, rarely do the women sell enough products to sustainably rise completely out of poverty. Since eradication of poverty is the goal of Fair Trade buying, AFairWorld hopes that their artisans will reach a sustainable level of living.
For more about Linda’s travel and study in Uganda and in Thailand, refer to her book entitled “Sustainability: Quality of Life for Artisans Practicing the Fair Trade Business Model.” See the UMI Dissertation Publishing on the Proquest.com website home page or you can order this on our contact page