I met Bhekizwe in July of 2011 when my son John and I traveled to Africa. One of the highlights of our trip was the few days spent in Victoria Falls and visiting the local craft market.
As a craftsperson, I sympathized in the struggle these many artists were up against. The economy was bad, the tourists scarce and so many of the tiny shops were competing against each other by selling almost identical handicrafts. I purchased 8 bowls to carry home with me as gifts and after making our purchases John and I sat and talked with both the men and the women in the market. English is one of the official languages, taught in most of the schools so we were able to communicate easily. Because I was a craftsperson and in a similar business as them, they were interested to hear about the “craft markets” in America.
All of the young men carried cell phones and before I departed, I left with several e-mail contacts and the promise to e-mail photos to them when I returned home. I also promised to send a care package with used clothing and upon my return to California, Alisha and I collected nearly new clothing and I shipped the largest box allowed to Bhekizwe to share with his friends. He later e-mailed me photos of each of the women and the men that I had met, holding a piece of clothing or a pair of shoes that they had chosen from the box.
Last week the long awaited for box with 9 wooden bowls arrived and I am pleased to offer these for sale on my web site. For those of you interested, I will update the sales of these bowls at the bottom of this blog post.
50% of all sales will go to Bhekizwe and his family.
The following bowls have been sold!