A friend who had previously learned how to make jewelry from natural materials, such as coconut, seeds, clay and others, taught Evelyn. As she started learning how to craft the jewelry, it was not easy and she needed to gain more skills quickly. But she gradually developed patience, perseverance and creativity. Despite having no experience in this work before, she was very surprised how creative she could be!
Now, Evelyn works with five women, in a space inside her house called taller. They craft pieces of jewelry made from many natural materials, such as: coconut, seeds, clay and others. Evelyn has found a way to help other women through her work. For example, she buys seeds from different women who have valuable raw materials in their yard and some people don’t even know it! It’s a win-win, Evelyn gets the necessary materials she needs for her jewelry and the women earn a little money.
Also, along with her 5 partners, they use some of their limited profits to facilitate workshops in the community aimed at women, youth and children. They focus on topics such as crafts and women’s health, specifically, prevention of breast and cervical cancer. Additionally, since 2009, they have organized a library where folks come to learn how to paint, make pinatas, and participate in art therapy.
Evelyn believes in “giving the best in everything she does” is why she decided to be part of the Women Empowerment Project and so far she has not been disappointed. Thus far, after each workshop, she shares what she has learned with her daughters because she knows that she is their guide to becoming successful women in the future.
At the moment, Evelyn is in charge of commercializing and selling their jewelry at craft shows and to small stores at a wholesale price. Although they have gained positive results, she knows that they could earn higher profits if they could sell directly to the final consumer.
This is why Evelyn is beginning to innovate her business approach. In a recent workshop, she started thinking about a new idea – opening a “store and school” where she can teach people the process of making a necklace or pair of earnings “because being a craftsman is a way of educating yourself.” She hopes that with this idea people will understand the value of manual labor. In the meantime, she maintains hope and continues to work to realize her vision!