Posted on November 12, 2015
This holiday season, we have a special focus that we want to share with our friends and partners: the Artisan sector. The gifts we purchase for our loved ones (and ourselves!) have a global impact no matter what, but by focusing your purchasing power on handcrafted, artisan goods, you can contribute to the empowerment of artists and craftsmen worldwide. Artisan work is the second largest employer in the developing world (behind agriculture), and over 65% of artisan activity takes place in developing economies – with the majority of artisans being women and informal, small producers!
At Weissberg Foundation, we’ve loved working with the Alliance for Artisan Enterprise to create more, and more sustainable, ways of supporting artisans. In fact, our board member Nina Weissberg recently travelled with Peggy Clark, the director of the AAE, to Colombia this month with our partner Root Capital, and have enjoyed the continual development of this relationship. As we move forward in developing strategic support models for artisan businesses, we want to invite you to participate in the artisan economy.
Purchasing from artisans at the holidays is a great, easy way to support developing businesses as well as ensure the preservation of cultural heritages across the globe. As you can see in the list we’ve created below, there are tons of opportunities to buy everything from jewelry to furniture from artisans. There’s no better time than the holidays to pick up wonderful, artistic goods and simultaneously spread economic and creative opportunity!
- Macy’s products from Rwanda and Haiti (Search for gifts that give hope)
- West Elm artisan products (under the “handmade” collection)