Latitude and Longing Blog: Follow Me to Africa

Latitude and longing….The two words rolling around in my thoughts as I prepare to head back to Africa soon.  The work we do at Creative Women of the World (CWOW) allows me to be on the ground, working one on one with the women we partner with.  I get to know them personally, meet their families, see where they live, learn their stories.  They are like my family, and Africa, my second home.  Latitude and longing. My desire to go back. My wistful wanderlust.  

I’m so very excited to get to see the women again soon, and I want to take you on my journey…

The month of February I will be spending time with two groups that CWOW has been working with for awhile now.  For the first two weeks of the month I will be back in Nairobi with our Mwangatu women. We have been privileged to work alongside these amazing women for the last two years.  Mwangatu, means “light of hope” in Swahili.  The bone jewelry that they create is beautiful and eye catching.  Each piece of jewelry they create has a signature red bead that acts as a catalyst for solidarity, education and compassion for those dealing with AIDS/HIV.   We have an exciting new project that CWOW will be collaborating with the Mwangatu women on that we will be revealing soon!  The women have all completed our training program and have created their own small businesses with the grant that they received from CWOW.  As they are continuing to grow and develop their business, we are happy to be able to continue to support them along the way, thru additional training, mentoring, product development, and partnerships,as well as being able to carry their beautiful products in our shop.

Next I will be travelling to Kampala, Uganda to work with a group called The Fortress.  It is an organization providing a safe and loving home for the pregnant teenagers who are abandoned or come from abusive environments. They provide guidance and counselling as well as training in life skills, pregnancy and childcare.  And they are dedicated to resettling the girls to their families and communities when the time is right.  Last year, Lorelei, our Executive Director, and Grace, our Advocate in Kenya, spent some time at The Fortress and helped train the women their in starting a soap making project.  You can read about their sudsy and amazing experience here [[[[link to blog story]]]]].   While I am there I will continue to develop that program and offer training to the young women as well as doing further product development with the organization.  Remember that exciting new project we will be revealing soon?  A piece of the puzzle lies with this group as well…