Imvelo Eswatini from Swaziland
In the small southern African nation of Swaziland, a talented group of artisans blends traditional technique and mixed media to create an amazing range of knockout jewelry designs. Eclectic vision and a variety of natural and recycled materials imbue each piece with the artisan's own uniquely soulful experience. A medley of shapes and colors embodies the beauty of the process and makes each piece as singular as the artisan who makes it and the woman who will eventually wear it.
Imvelo Eswatini was established in 2007 by Manzini Youth Care (MYC), a Salesian Catholic NGO working with marginalized youth and their families in Swaziland. Today it's a thriving enterprise working with over 25 women from informal urban settlements who carefully and lovingly craft each accessory by hand.
Founded by St. John Bosco, the Salesian order honors the many courageous women in the world who give generously of themselves to raise children on their own. Bosco's own mother, Mama Margarita, was the inspiration behind Imvelo Eswatini. Her courage as a young widow and mother inspired her son, leading him to spend his own life caring for hundreds of orphaned boys. MYC's director, Father Larry McDonnell, saw a parallel between this remarkable woman and Swaziland's inspiring moms. With their help, he established Imvelo Eswatini to provide women with flexible work opportunities and sustainable income, vastly improving their lives and their children's futures.