MEET OUR ARTISAN PARTNERS
Juana is 35 years old. Married but currently without children, she has been working with the weaving cooperative for the last three years, but she learned to weave at the age of 10. She is the 5th child out of six siblings, and she says that going to church on Sunday is the highlight of her week each week.
Sandra is one of those people who is always smiling! She is 37 years old, and is the 2nd born of 6 siblings. Sandra and her husband, who works as a gardener, have a young son who is 18 months old. She wasn't able to attend school past the third grade, as her family was not able to keep sending her with the demands of the home. She is the 5th generation of weavers in her family, and because of your support through Bonita Pina, she is now able to weave at home on her loom and be with her son.
Maria is 40 years old and the oldes of 8 siblings. She is married with two boys, ages 10 and 15, that she is keeping in school through her work with the weaving cooperative. When asked about what she enjoys doing for herself each week, she said that since she was forced to drop out of school to help in the home at a young age, she loves having her boys teach her each day what they learn at school.
Maria is married with 5 children - ages 3, 5, 8, 11 and 15 - two girls and three boys. She herself is the youngest of 8 siblings. She has been weaving as a member of the cooperative for 4 years, and one the things she enjoys most in life is keeping her home neat and orderly. About her weavings, she feels like through Bonita Pina, she has an outlet to connect the multiple generations of weavers in her family with the world, which makes her very proud.
Mikaela is the head artisan of a cooperative of female artisans in Guatemala. She is the third born child of her parents, and out of her 9 siblings, she was the first person in her family to attend school. Eighteen years ago, Mikaela, along with three other ladies, started the cooperative to help female artisans in her town earn incomes, specifically those women who had either lost their husband in the fighting of the Guatemalan Civil War or ladies with violent, drunk, or abusive husbands.
Francisca believes she is about 40 years old, but does not exactly the year she was born. Married with four children - ages 3, 9, 12 and 14 - her happiest times each week are when she is watching her kids swim in the lake while she washes the their clothes.
Manuela is 18 years old, and she is one of the youngest artisans in the weaving cooperative. She is the 5th of 7 children, and she is not married. She has been working with the cooperative since she was 16 years old. For enjoyment, she said her two favorite things are cooking for her big family and attending church.
Ana Maria used to sell her wares on the street in the local markets until working with Bonita Pina. Thanks to you and your purchases of Bonita Bands, she is able to work from home and see her two children, 12 and 8, when they are not at school. She said that her most enjoyable times each week are when she gets to come to meetings of the weaving cooperative with the other ladies, because they make her feel important. She is 33 years old, and the oldest of 4 siblings.
At 52 years old, Matea has been weaving for over 40 years. She has 5 children - ages 32, 28, 24, 22, and 12 - and 3 grandchildren. She said that one of her greatest joys, when she has time, is playing with her grandchildren and making them smile.