Meeting the people and hands behind our products.
I’ve just returned from my productive trip to Kenya. During my visit I was able to connect with two different groups of artisans that I’m working with to create kimber elements’ 2022 fall collection. I’m excited to share their stories and the impact that we are making.
O L D O I N Y O O I B O R
I had a lovely visit with Isaiah, Naomi, the Chairlady, and the Treasurer of our Oldoinyo Oibor Maasai women’s group who created our beaded products. While we drank coffee and tea under an umbrella acacia tree, we discussed the challenges they are facing and the positive impact our project is making on their families.
The drought is hitting their community hard this year, as they have to buy water at the pumps and their livestock is too skinny to sell for meat. They told me how proud they are of our two scholarship recipients and how their families are making sacrifices to support the girls while they are in school.
We also discussed solutions for better quality control for our products and what systems and support they need during the production process.
J I M A N I C O L L E C T I O N S
I’m starting a new partnership with Jimani Collections who created our new brass products. I visited Jimani’s workshop in Kasarani, Nairobi which is a humble space with a studio, classroom and a mini-store. Jimani not only provides dignified work for impoverished women, they also offer a small business-focused Entrepreneurship Program to equip women with educational and mentoring opportunities that will help them to start their own businesses.
I was able to meet six of the mothers, sisters, daughters, and widows who make up Jimani Collections who come from many different backgrounds but all have one goal, to make a better life for others and themselves. It was great to sit with them as they kindly demonstrated how to assemble the earrings they were working on. Their brass materials and products are produced by metalsmith workshops in Kibera, which is the largest slum in Kenya.
It makes such a difference to meet the people and hands behind our products and to know the impact that it makes in their lives. I’m proud of our partnerships and our evolving product offerings. I can’t wait to share our new collection with you which will launch in October.
Thanks for reading and being a part of our journey.