International Women's Day is celebrated every year on March 8. However, the earliest International Women's Day was actually held on February 28, 1909, with the decision being made the following year by the International Women's Conference to move the date to March 8. International Woman's Day is now recognized worldwide, and represents a national public holiday in many countries. It is a day that celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women, with the theme for 2018 being 'Time is Now: Rural and Urban Activists Transforming Women’s Lives'
Here at beyondBeanie, we are extremely proud and humbled to work with such a fantastic group of female Bolivian artisans. While we appreciate the work they do day in and day out, International Woman's Day at beyondBeanie is a special occasion for us to express our support and gratitude for these beautiful women, and to appreciate not only where they are now, but also where they have come from.
Our beyondBeanie artisans are all women, and are based in the cities of La Paz, El Alto and Cochabamba in Bolivia. A harsh reality of being from both the poorest and highest indigenous-populated country in South America, indigenous woman in Bolivia - including the local artisans we work with - are often socially and economically marginalized. Some of the impacts these women have endure include:
Our beautiful artisans, however, absolutely love the work they do in creating your beyondBeanie products. Through beyondBeanie they are empowered, and they now have an opportunity to earn an income and work from home to support their children, helping to give their life a real purpose - something that is sadly lacking in much of the indigenous population in Bolivia.
Prior to commencing employment with beyondBeanie, all of our artisans are trained in the art of sewing as well as the operation of all the instruments and machines they use. These are skills that will remain with them for life and assist in future work opportunities and thus income for their families. The income earned by our artisans through their work with beyondBeanie is invaluable to the support and care of their families, in the provision of food, medicines and education.
There are photos and profiles of each of our artisans on our website, where customers who have purchased one of their hand-signed products can contact them to learn more about who they are and to say thank you for their product. There is even the opportunity to physically meet their artisan if the customer ever finds them-self in Bolivia.
So join us in celebrating this special day of the year! It is a chance to say thank you to the beautiful and amazing women in our world, and in the case of beyondBeanie, the wonderful artisans who bring each and every one of our products to life. We are thankful not only for the work they do, but for the beautiful people that they are.
Written by Steve Connors
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