amani ya juu
while in kenya during the summer of 2008, i was introduced to amani ya juu. swahili for “higher peace”, amani employs marginailized women from rwanda, burundi, congo, sudan, kenya and other countries that are currently experiencing civil unrest. the women of amani are given opportunities to learn important skills such as design, sewing marketing, bookkeeping, quality control and customer service. amani also reaches the women’s spiritual side, by incorporating songs of praise and bible study breaks during the work day. amani works the the notion that God’s peace can transform even the most troubled lives.
even better, amani is comminted to being a fair trade company, offering competitive pay and benefits for the women who work there. they provide an income for the women that not only allows them to survive, but meet needs for their families such as health care and education. there is also an emergency fund available to help women who are just starting out until they are able to improve their standard of living. and, one fo my favorite things about amani, is that absolutely NONE of the proceeds are used for administrative salaries, but simply for the growth and development of the women! amazing.
to buy some of there amazing products, go here. i purchased a bag similar to the original market bag, and i LOVE it! not only is it a beautiful design, but it is impeccably made. the quality of amani’s products is very high; these products were made to last and stitched with a delicacy that only handmade products can carry. they have many things i’d love to purchase but here are some of my favorites:
i’ll save myself the strife of documenting all the bags i love (and you, from reading all of them!), and just say that i love them all. but how cute is this clutch?!?!
and follow their blog.