MayaWorks

MayaWorks' mission is to empower low-income indigenous women to end their cycle of poverty and improve their lives. MayaWorks trains artisans to transform their traditional weaving skills into a means of financial support for their families. Volunteers in the U.S. sell artisan products creating a market for the traditional arts of Maya women. This collaboration creates an opportunity for Maya women to achieve economic security and for North American women to participate in economic justice.
Jan 9, 2017

Microloans Help Women Create Judaica Products

Lila will soon get a larger loom
Lila will soon get a larger loom

One of MayaWorks' niche product lines includes our yarmulkes and prayer shawls that our artisan partners create for the Jewish community.  Nobody has taken better advantage of our micorloans to create judaica products than Lila.  Lila recently paid off a microcredit loan that she used to purchase looms that would allow her to create "tallitot" or prayer shawls.  And now she's at it again!  Lila is applying for a new loan to purchase a loom that will allow her to make tallitot that are double the size of the ones she makes now. This means much more income for Lila.

Lila says she has benefitted from her  microloans more than she imagined.  She's expanded her home to include a second level, purchased cows and rabbits that she breeds and sells for profit and even helped to pay for her son's wedding.  She knows that smart management of her loan means the ability to leverage her earnings to invest in larger projects. An added benefit of a successful microloan project: Women in her community see Lila as a role model!

At MayaWorks we are always eager to see what Lila will do next and don't hesitate to approve her microloan application because we are confident Lila will manage a successful income generating project. Thank you to Global Giving donors who support our microcredit loan program.

Lila at her loom creating the atarah of the tallit
Lila at her loom creating the atarah of the tallit

Links:

Jan 8, 2017

Hard Work and Perseverance Pays Off for Ingrid

Ingrid is happy to receive a full scholarship.
Ingrid is happy to receive a full scholarship.

Ingrid loves to study.  Her mother, Clementina, a MayaWorks artisan, says that as soon as she gets home from school, Ingrid pulls out her notebooks to continue her school work. Her parents never had the chance to go to school so when they learned of a scholarship opportunity that would pay for Ingrid's education through college graduation, they knew they had to support her, eventough it meant she would move away from  their village to live in Guatemala City.

Ingrid is only in thrid grade.  Her parents have never traveled more than five miles out of their village so letting Ingrid move to the big city is an enormous leap of faith for her parents.  After a long process of exams and home visits, Ingrid learned just before Christmas that she was chosen to receive the Boys Hope Girls Hope scholarship that would pay 100% of her tuition and room and board through college graduation.

Ingrid will move to Guatemala City where she will study at Esperanza Juvenil and live with other young scholarship recipients.  It will be quite an adjustment for her but she is very excited inspite of her young age when most young girls would be afraid to leave their families.  Ingrid knows this is a once in a lifetime opportunity and it gives her the opportunity to do what she most loves --study!

MayaWorks is grateful for the partnership with other NGOs that bring these opportunities to our artisan partners and their families.

Ingrid and her mother, Clementina
Ingrid and her mother, Clementina

Links:

Oct 11, 2016

Expanding Empowerment Programming

Women and girls benefit from violence prevention.
Women and girls benefit from violence prevention.

MayaWorks believes that community development begins with the development of its women.  To assist women in developing a strong self-identity, MayaWorks has expanded its programming to include much needed domestic violence prevention and intervention services.  

Domestic violence services are very important in Guatemala where nearly 10 out of every 100,000 women are killed. Unfortunately, in Guatemala, violence against women isn't seen as a crime but rather a family issue.  So when Chimaltenango lost its only domestic violence agency, MayaWorks decided it had to do something to bring these services back to the community. 

In September, MayaWorks partnered with psychologists and social workers who specialize in domestic violence and together they began serving women in the central highlands who are trying to leave abusive relationships. MayaWorks is also developing a prevention curriculum where weaving classes will be augmented with women's empowerment seminars. Women and girls of all ages will participate in this cross-generational program.

Links:

 
   

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