Every time I go to India, I try to visit one of our artisan's homes to get a glimpse of their life and how they’re doing.
I had a chance to visit Vanilla and her family who lives just a 5 minute walk from the sewing unit.
She was so happy to meet us in her home and made us some hand-squeezed lemonade since it was a hot day.
Vennilla has been working at the sewing unit for over 9+ years and has greatly benefited from her employment there.
I ask her what’s the best thing about working and she said the ability to have a place away from her personal worries. She herself is a survivor and has lived through some tough atrocities, but now finds rest in our partner sewing unit. She has 2 sons and a daughter that she provides for and hopes that one day they can have an opportunity to go to college and earn a good living. I asked her daughter what she wants to be when she grows up and she shyly answers “doctor”. Her sons both chime in and say gregariously “engineer!”
It makes me really happy to see the hope that they have in their hearts. Without Vanilla's secure job at our partner sewing unit, her children's dreams may not become a reality. But the hope is that if she has continuing work making EllieFunDay products these dreams can come true.
As we continue to chat more, she disappears into her bedroom briefly and pulls out a well loved but tattered notebook of hers.
She starts flipping through the pages and shows me her amazing embroidery homework that she’s done to achieve her “tailor” status.
As I run my hand over her intricate work it strikes me, that the humanness of embroidery is such a lost art. When we buy things it’s easy for us to not honor the person behind the craft. When I see embroidery I see the intricate nuances of each stitch and it harkens back to the person behind it. Things made by hand are getting to be a lost art.
I cherish gifts that are handmade and made to last for a lifetime. Vanilla finds a lot of joy in embroidering our blankets and wants to show the world more of her capability.
Her level of expertise is amazing and I’m ever grateful for the love and care she puts behind our blankets and accessories.
In this season of giving, I hope that you would consider giving to our non-profit “handcrafted for life” to support more women like Vennilla and her family out of poverty.
Your giving matters and creates sustainable solutions to empowerment.
Here are some ideas as to what your giving brings.
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