Smile Politely

International Women’s Day Celebration at Ten Thousand Villages

From the press release:

Ten Thousand Villages Champaign will showcase the stories and beautiful, hand-dyed scarves made by refugee women from East Africa during their Annual International Women’s Day Celebration. The event will take place on Saturday, March 7th from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Ten Thousand Villages in Downtown Champaign.

Each scarf tells a story of resilience, empowerment and hope for new life after war for women working the Maisha Collective in Kenya.

The Maisha Collective is a division of Heshima Kenya, the first organization in Kenya devoted to protecting unaccompanied and separated refugee girls and women.  The Maisha Collective is a peer-driven initiative that fosters leadership and management skills through the design and production of hand-dyed scarves.

Purchasing scarves from the Maisha Collective helps empower and ultimately protect young refugee women like Dahabo Hassan Maow. Dahabo lost her leg after being caught in crossfire at the age of 14. After unsuccessfully seeking assistance in Kenyan refugee camps, she was able to find support from Heshima Kenya. With this support, Dahabo was able to attend a training program in tailoring and traditional dye techniques. The young woman then shared her skills and helped found the Maisha Collective. 

All of the proceeds are reinvested into Heshima Kenya and the savings of the collective members.

Ten Thousand Villages is a non-profit fair trade retailer working to improve the livelihood of tens of thousands of artisan partners in over 30 countries through long-term relationships and creating a North American marketplace for handicrafts.

The scarves of the Maisha Collective will be available for purchase for one day only at Ten Thousand Villages Champaign, located in Downtown Champaign at 105 N. Walnut Street.

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