This donation to the Maiwa Foundation will support schoolgirls of the Jawaja leatherworkers and weavers cooperative (AAJ - Artisan's Alliance of Jawaja). A donation of $100 cdn purchases a sturdy, well-built, bicycle for one of the female schoolchildren of the village.
Some of the children of Jawaja artisans have to walk several miles to school. The distance, combined with the time taken and the obligation to do other work in the home can make it difficult for them to attend school (or to have enough time to complete homework). In these rural Indian families boys usually get bikes and girls do not.
The pink bike project was conceived as a way to assist the village schoolgirls. These bike are female "style" and very pink - the boys are not interested in them!
In collaboration with the Artisans Alliance of Jawaja the Maiwa Foundation oversees the purchase of the bikes and the distribution in the village.
The backstory to this project.
Jane Stafford (of Jane Stafford Textiles, JST) a weaver from Salt Spring Island, visited the AAJ weavers in 2014. After that meeting Jane was inspired to assist the group. In her own words:
"Way back in 2014, Handwoven Magazine gave me a little award for $500.00 and JST matched that with another $500.00. We donated $1000.00 to the Maiwa Foundation requesting that the money be used for girls education in the village of Jawaja. During the next tour a lovely lady matched that donation so there was now $2000.00 to go to the girls. In the end it was decided by the Jawaja village that the money go to buy bicycles so the girls could travel the long distances to get to school and they wouldn't have to start and end there day walking in the dark. The bicycles are pink and girls style and extremely sturdy so the boys of the village aren't interested in them :^)"
The first group of bicycles were delivered in January 2016. The project has been such a success that when Jane Stafford next visited the village of Jawaja in 2017 a second round of bicycle purchases was planned. Your donation will go to this project.