Thank you for visiting Karama's "Your Seat at the Table" fundraising page!
Support the expansion of dignified work in the developing world as we raise money to fund artisan development and empowerment!
Our artisans benefit from one-on-one, small business assistance. The funds raised will support In-Country Production Managers in Ethiopia and Kenya, Martha and Philisters, who work hand-in-hand with artisans to increase production, quality, sales and impact while insuring dignity for every artisan.
Karama Collection is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.
Who we are:
Karama was born out of a dream to live in a world where poverty is overcome by dignified work. We alleviate poverty by restoring dignity through creative, purposeful work for artisans.
Karama began with 6 women, marginalized by their position in society, supporting themselves and their families however they could. Often, women in this situation are enslaved or forced into selling their bodies as a means of feeding their families.
As our founder developed a better alternative and meaningful work, she recognized the opportunity, dignity, and freedom that dignified work brings to communities.
Starting with a single artisan partner in Ethiopia in 2006, Karama has expanded to work with artisans in 5 countries, affecting over 2,400 artisans and their families. Each purchase provides layers of transformation, yielding individual, community, economic and eternal impact.
Our In-Country Production Manager for Ethiopia, Martha grew up in Ethiopia understanding the value of small business. She began her own small company and learned much about business basics, quality and distribution. Martha has also worked with artisans through multiple US-based nonprofits, training them how to develop products, show and sell in the global marketplace, even traveling to the US for tradeshows.
She believes in the beauty of handmade, and uses her resources to strengthen artisan small businesses in quality checking and production review.
Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda: Philisters
Philisters is the most recent addition to our team. She studied Community Development at university in Nairobi and has held competitive sales positions prior to joining the Karama team. We're impressed with her positive attitude, communication and leadership skills. She leads quality review and production assistance, as well as develop and communicate technical product spec sheets for artisans.
What we do:
Karama invests in artisan-led businesses through product purchases, product development, and on-the-job training.
As business partners, our seat at the artisan table allows us to:
- nurture artisan relationships,
- champion small business development,
- and invest in African teens through Young Life Africa camp sponsorships.
Karama grew by over 30% in sales last year. As sales continue to increase, dignified jobs are created and our network of small -to- medium-sized artisan-led businesses grows.
Where we work:
Karama identifies artisans working with marginalized people groups in the developing world, with concentrated focus on East Africa and Haiti.
From the largest urban slum in Africa, recycled brass is hammered into shape. From the streets of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, our artisans gather to hand-sew the finest leather bags. Rural Ethiopians recycle bullet casings into beads, creating beauty out of ashes in jewelry. Remote weavers in Tanzania create masterpieces on antique looms. And resourceful young people collect ethically-sourced Ugandan horn to recycle into beautiful jewelry.
Each native group utilizes locally available resources to hand-make unique products. And each group supports their families and local economies throughout East Africa.
Karama's Triple Impact:
In Africa, Haiti, and the United States, people are finding their place within the Swirl of Good, the cycle of positive impact that is tripled through Karama.
- Artisans in developing areas support their families through creative, dignified work.
- Artisan income infuses local economies and provides resource for further community development.
- Sales proceeds are reinvested in the areas where artisans live and work.
Individual artisans overcome obstacles like disability, living life HIV positive, and extreme poverty through creativity within Karama.
- Dorothy started out as a single mother struggling to support her son. When she lost hope in her own sewing business, she found success with Karama's artisan partners. After seven years of empowerment within the artisan group, she has become the assistant designer while increasing her skills and her income to 6 times her former pay.
- Eunice works as a jewelry maker, supporting her husband, two kids, and mother. Recently, Eunice's husband was attacked by robbers. Severely wounded, he was forced to be out of work for an extended period of time. Eunice not only was able to leave work to attend to him, but received assistance with medical bills through her artisan group. Her dignified work allowed her to feed her family in the face of crisis.
How YOU can help
Throughout these activities, you can find your seat at the table with our artisans.
- Take your seat alongside Martha and Philisters by your direct support in this campaign, and be part of the love, relationship and business expertise they share with artisans.
- Gather around our Mama Table within our headquarters in Evansville, Indiana, quality-checking and tagging products for sale.
- Come together in one of our team meetings, where members from across the world work to refine product and practices for the global marketplace.
- Join our Swirl and receive weekly prayer updates from our team regarding God's favor and artisan requests.
- Shop our beautiful products, each handmade with dignity! Visit karamacollection.com.
Join us to increase jobs for artisans like Eunice and Dorothy, by increasing production and quality through Martha and Philister's work! Together, we can provide more dignified work in areas of extreme poverty.
Take your seat at the table of opportunity.
- More dignified jobs.
- More food on the tables of artisan families.
- More school fees paid on the behalf of artisan children.
- More artisans with the freedom to dream of a better life.
- More kids meeting Jesus at Young Life camps.
- More stories rewritten for His glory.
Your donation will fund this swirl of impact!
We're seeking 24,000 to fund Martha and Philisters' work over the next 12 months. Every gift secures a seat at the table of opportunity!