ALISON LONGSON MAY REPORT

What a fantastic result! I’m sure you all know what I’m referring to – yes, of course – this year’s Fabric and Yarn Sale. This is such a great event on so many levels, starting with the donors. There are many reasons people have for clearing out their precious stashes and they don’t want to just throw them out. People love knowing that their contributions are going to help Grandmothers in Africa. Every year, our faithful customers wait eagerly for the sale so they can stock up on the materials they want for their next creative projects and of course, do so very economically Then, very importantly, Ujamaa Grandmas are able to access materials to work their magic and turn them into the wonderful creations we see at the Fall handcrafts sale. So, a few balls of yarn that maybe cost $5 are turned into an exquisite shawl that could sell for $60 or more. What a great business model is that! Finally, we are able to give our proceeds to the Stephen Lewis Foundation for their all-important work with our partners in Sub-Saharan Africa.

On another note, I am very excited to be hosting next week, Eunice Mangwane from Keiskamma Trust in South Africa together with Megan Karges, SLF Campaign Officer. I already know Eunice, as my husband and I spent a week with the Keiskamma Trust and were very impressed with the project. This organisation has a strong emphasis on the creative arts, so will be of special interest to all you hand crafters. Eunice has a wonderful story to tell about her life and what led to her work in the area of HIV/AIDS. We are blessed to have her visit us in Calgary and I’m hoping that many of you will be able to attend the special gathering on Thursday, May 4th to hear her powerful voice for yourselves.