This multi-generational group has been working with Mayan Hands for 19 years, initially creating woven products and then bracelets. There wasn’t sufficient work for all of them, and they expressed an interest in learning a new skill. Mayan Hands brought teachers, with special needles, wool, and other necessary implements and taught them felting. After a special visit to the zoo in Guatemala City, they began making felted animals, and now have a collection of over 60 different ones.
Artisans Diega, Carmen, Maria and Candelaria are the four artisans making our FTJ-designed mobile. Diega is in her 30’s and her daughter has a scholarship from Mayan Hands. Carmen is the head of the artisan group; she is in her mid-20’s and has two daughters. Maria is in her mid-30’s and single. Candelaria is the group secretary and is in her mid-20’s and single.
The younger women in this group have fewer children than other villages we’ve visited in Guatemala, and waited to start having children until their twenties or thirties. Some of the women are still single (in their thirties and forties) and have chosen not to get married. They have been able to make this choice because there is sufficient work at a livable wage that allows them to be financially self-sufficient.