Sunday, April 14, 2013

Some Guatemala Links....

I cannot say enough about the wonderful and amazing trip I took to Guatemala in February.  I hope the photos and text I've been sharing along the way have helped to convey this....but really, it's just but a small glimpse into the trip, and a somewhat superficial one, at that. 

If you are intrigued, want to learn more, and maybe even thinking about going on the trip yourself, I would have no problem talking one-on-one about my own experiences, and no hesitation at all in recommending it to those who have a sense of adventure, compassion and love of textiles. 

There are some great places online where you can see some photos and learn more about some of various programs and groups at work in the country.....

 Oxlajuj B'atz' - Thirteen Threads
(pronouced Osh-la-who-bats)....organized the tour, but that is but a small part of what they do.  With projects in health, artisan and product development, small business, democracy and team building, the focus is on empowerment by increasing knowledge and skills.  "The mission of Oxlajuj B’atz’ is to facilitate processes for Maya women artisans to bring about change, through their own efforts, that will alleviate the adverse effects of poverty and improve their quality of life. Our mission is guided by the principles of harmony, democracy, and sustainability."
Cultural Cloth
Is Mary Anne and Jody's business, based in Wisconsin, that collaborates with artisans around the world to promote women's economic empowerment and environmentally sustainable practices.  You can purchase Guatemalan rugs directly from them.

Robert Egg's Photos
Robert own Casa Kachiquel, home to Oxlajuj Batz in Panajachel.  He took quite a few photos over the course of the week, especially during our farewell gathering.

Rachel's Photos
Rachel is an American who is presently volunteering with Thirteen Threads.  It was delightful to meet her.  She took some fabulous video (and, unlike me, has figured out how to share it online....), including this can see more on the Oxlajuj B'atz' Google + page.

After being home for seven weeks now, I think I am slowly starting to get a bit of a handle on the impact this trip has had on me, personally.  It's going to take a little more time, though.