I just grabbed lunch with one of my best childhood friends, Laurel Gunnarson, who is heading back to India next week. Before I continue let me give you some of our history. We were in a club called The Buttons, crept around Woodacre pretending to be spies (trench-coats and all), imagined we were just like the characters from the movie Now And Then and did endless crafts. While beading was never my thing, I should have known at a young age that Laurel would find a way to incorporate it into here life, as she probably asked me hundreds of times if I wanted to bead with her even though I declined 80% of the time.
During her last trip to India she worked at NGOs teaching jewelry to women struggling with poverty, sex trafficking and HIV. Teaching these women how to make jewelry provided them with a skill, craft and opportunity to make their own income.
After returning from her last trip to India Laurel (true to her nature) knew she wanted to do more for these women and there had to be a way she could help set up something more permanent. This is where The Didi Jewlry Project is born. The Didi Jewelry Project provides you with the opportunity to purchase handcrafted jewelry made by ladies who are facing hardships. (I should mention that didi means sister in Hindu.)
Our mission is to provide Indian women engulfed in hardship with an opportunity for change. By teaching them jewelry making and selling their products we empower women financially and personally. – L.J.G.
|The different lines of jewelry uses designs inspired by Indian culture
along with recycled bangles and seed
If you check out the website it has an intimate feeling where you can read stories about the women Laurel has been directly working with, learn more about the NGO’s and a bit more about the founder herself. Incase it’s not apparent I’m impressed and proud – nicely done Laurel (are you blushing?)