The Sawa Sawa Collection provides the women of rural Kenya direct access to the American fashion consumer. In this way, and through our educational and entrepreneurship programs, our mission is to promote cultural preservation and empower artisan women in Kenya to provide a sustainable, dignified living using skills passed down through generations. Their creations embody timeless technique with both traditional and modern design in the creation of beaded jewelry, woven wear, sculpture, basketry, bags, scarves, earrings, necklaces, and works of art.
Our near term vision is to establish a resource center near Nairobi that is a safe space for the women artisans to learn, grow and support each other. We will provide the resources needed to create quality products for those have the skills and vision – but do not have the financial capacity to get started, and training in ancient skills, design, business, arts, culture etc. Our goal for the center is for it to be a haven of community and women empowerment, provide education, food, nutrition and support for entrepreneurship and economic freedom, and to create lasting solutions to the unique challenges affecting rural artisan women in rural Kenya.
Our Problem Statement
Impoverished artisan women in Kenya lack empowerment, market, resources, community support and means of making a sustainable living in entrepreneurship using intricate skills that have been passed down through generations in beading, weaving, basketry, sculpting and art. They already have the skills and use them in their daily lives. They need a group of fellow women that will help them realize the value and monetary potential in their craft.
Our Solution Statement
We plan to create a resource center for the women artisans that is a safe space for the women and their families. We want to instill value in the handmade accessories, shoes, bags, sculptures, art etc. Encourage a love and appreciation for the culture and ancient craftsmanship. Provide supportive programs that helps improve the quality of life in the community like training for younger artisans, education and child care for the young mothers, hot meals and nutrition, resources for the craft, etc. Build a fashion and art brand that helps the artisans make a sustainable living and empowers women through economic development.