Monday, June 19, 2006

Because of the nature of my blog entries, most readers probably have the idea that I spend my days making pink birthday cakes, singing and fussing over my cat. This is far from true. I also go to mask festivals and lock myself into hotel rooms. But when I am not busy with these activities, I have plenty of other things to fill my time.
Most mornings I go to the Papiers du Sahel workshop. And I spend many afternoons doing work for the project at home- answering e-mails, printing out labels, making phone calls, taking pictures of products, and lots of other things.
It’s a particularly busy time right now, as the rent on our workspace as gone up by 100%! We need to move- preferably to a better location. I am currently trying to get a grant to buy land and at the same time trying to get a place in the national craft center here (the Village Artisanale). We’ll just see what works out best.
The women at the project are very busy, too. They are currently making 6000 gift envelopes and 500 Christmas tree ornaments for a client in France.
I also work with a small group of women that make soap. A friend in Switzerland did fund-raising and got me some money to start up a project making liquid soap and bars of shea butter soap. It has been running for two years now. The women of “Savons du Sahel” are very busy right now as well, making 400 bars of soap for a client in Niger that has a small gift shop.
If you are curious, do follow the link for Papiers at right. It is in English and we are going to be updating it this September. It gives a little history of the paper group, a short biography of each woman and some photos of some of the things we make.
There are also Papiers pictures in the Photo Album. At the top of this post you can see a photo of Alizeta making Christmas tree ornaments.

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