"This dear woman, a daughter of Abraham, has been held in bondage ... for eighteen years. Isn't it right that she be released, even on the Sabbath?" (Luke 16:13 NIV).
In the poorest regions of rural Kenya, roughly 800,000 HIV positive women are struggling to maintain a viable income to provide for themselves and their families. The numbers of HIV positive women in rural Kenya are so high in part because the low socioeconomic status of many women limits their power to negotiate the use of a contraceptive, talk about infidelity with their partners, or leave dangerous relationships. Lack of access to secondary education (due to fees, poor transportation, need to be home for family, etc.)—fostered by high adolescent birth rates (95 out of every 1,000 births are born to women ages 15-19 according to The World Bank)—leave many women without access to sexual and reproductive health education. This is a vicious cycle.
African Jewelry and the Kenyan Economy
Jesus’ Economy believes that by valuing the work of these beautiful women through our partnership in the arts, they will begin to see themselves as they truly are. Not stigmas, diseased, or lower class women, but beautiful brides of Christ, made in His image and for His glory (Ephesians 5:22). Consequently, Jesus’ Economy has looked far and wide for opportunities to empower artisan women with jobs in Kenya. Through our partnerships, we're working to free women from the stigma of having a disease.
Empower Artisans by Shopping Fair Trade
Through her relationship with Tembo Trading Education Project, one of Jesus' Economy's partners, Anne Nasieku is able to grow the production of her handmade porcelain beaded bracelets, thereby helping other women establish themselves and create more jobs for artisans. The name of Anne’s program, “Mayiant," is fitting for her line of work. It means “blessings." This initiative allows HIV positive women to create intricate beadwork for the African beaded bracelets, handmade leather sandals, and other artisan crafted jewelry Anne sells. Selling these fair trade products allows the women to pay for their family’s monthly education fees and food costs.
It’s not often that you find handmade bracelets that will match nearly any outfit. These bracelets will. A kaleidoscope of colors contrasted with a black base makes that possible. And to top it off, every bead is made one hundred percent from porcelain. Purchasing this fair trade product and other artisan crafted jewelry helps provide jobs for artisans living in extreme poverty in Kenya, as well as better the lives of others in developing world communities. We hope that you will share these beautiful bracelets with your friends and family this holiday season. Click here to view these bracelets in our fair trade shop.