In April, Haiti Projects hired an all-women consulting team IDEO (Institution de Development Personnel et Organisationnel) to visit Fond des Blancs to conduct an employee training workshop with the women artisans. All of the artisans were invited to share thoughts about themselves, their work for Haiti Projects, and how Haiti Projects is doing as their employer. We asked the IDEO team to try to focus on what we can do to improve the working environment. Many women offered suggestions including, build a new workshop that they could call their own (House of Haiti Projects), increase the flow of steady work, avoiding fewer emergency orders, and bring in more innovative designs. The artisans also shared their personal priorities. Interestingly, the women say they are saving funds to: 1. Educate their children, 2. send their grown children to Brazil for work, 3. buy a motorcycle and, 4. improve and repair their homes. In other words, they value education, work, transportation and home improvements, not much different from most of us!
These workshops are supported by our donors help us improve the lives of artisans, by building capaicity, community, providing us with feedback, and by educating the women about future possiblites.
At the Haiti Projects Artisanat, new moms bring their babies to work with them when they come back from maternity leave. All the moms take turns caring for the new baby, helping the new mom adjust to her new responsibilities. We love the little ones because they make everyone smile and also allow moms to be with their kids, to nurse their babies longer and to avoid the cost of day care, an extra expense that many can't afford.
Meet Baby Sun Graphna Emmanuella. She is Roselaure's new baby, just one month old and indeed brings the sunshine to the Artisanat!
Katiana has been working at HP’s artisana workshop for 10 years. When she was a young girl her mother taught her and her sister how to sew. The skills she learned as a girl opened the door to a job at the HP artisana and a pathway to a stable income. With her income she pays for her 12 year old daughter to attend school and recently Kattiana decided to return to high school to finish 12th grade. Kattiana is not just a familiar face around the sewing room, but she can also be seen supporting her daughter on HP’s girls’ soccer team, or taking a computer course at our community library.