I have been traveling to some parts of Africa and know that women make excellent crafts, vivid clothes and jewelry. The people living in the “tourist part” are selling these crafts for a fortune. For example in East Africa, I found out that people can send their kids to the western world because they earn enough money by selling crafts, clothes, art and jewelry to tourists and a lot of foreigners will actually sponsor local families because of Guilt. However, the more remote that I have been, the more I know that this is NOT true for ALL African families.
For my 2012-2013 Trans-Africa Trip; my goal is to locate remote African towns, find out what they can make. Benin, Mali and Nigeria are the gems to locate African Fashion! Then I plan on setting up a website to sell their products. In return, I am hoping it will help them to make a living. I will take photographs and posted on the website so people can see their life. Some photographs that I plan on taking will include: the production of the products , pictures of the African craftsmen and of course pictures of their products. Thus I am asking YOU to support this campaign by donation.
How I can Guarantee that the money will get to the local people?
At the very beginning, I plan on buying as much as possible and will ship them back to New York. I will be paying the locals in cash for their crafts. As the business grows, and more interest in their crafts grow, I will set up a website – where the customers will be able to buy direct from the African craftsmen!
During my 2009 Africa trip, I bought 9 Malawi Chairs (from Malawi) and shipped 7 chairs back to USA by BOAT shipment( the other 2 HEAVY Malawi chairs – I carried with me from Malawi through Egypt); it took 5 months to get to my house!!! The shipping cost was very expensive because they are REAL HARD WOOD and are VERY HEAVY! They weigh 50 kgs all together!
The accessories and clothing that I plan to buy on my next upcoming 2012-2013 Trans-Africa Trip ; will be much lighter than those “heavy Malawi chairs”, so I will be able to purchase, and ship much larger amounts at considerably lower shipping prices. Thus, increasing the supply and (hopefully) demand chain of the African craftsmen (and craftswomen!).
Check out the great Malawi Chairs below! They really added so much to the decor of that room. I was very happy that I was able to support a few local African artists :-)!!!
If you support my plan and want to help out to start this amazing project , just click on the Donate button below. You financial support are gratefully appreciated. Thanks