Our Artisan Development Program was launched in 2009 to further support our artisans in their personal and professional growth. Today, the Program offers capacity building support, promoting the well-being of the artisan and her family.
Women-owned businesses in Guatemala face many challenges that often inhibit long-term success. A lack of institutional support to invest in either basic education or more advanced business skills for women— in particular indigenous women—has significantly contributed to the high levels of poverty amongst these women in the rural areas of Guatemala.
At Maya Traditions, we understand that when we invest in one woman, we are investing in a generation. The artisans we partner with are mothers and wives, and they manage their households as well as their family’s crops. In short, they are amazingly capable and strong, and welcome our support in realizing increased economic empowerment.
Many of the artisans we partner with did not have the opportunity to receive a formal education. By providing our artisans and cooperatives with the necessary training to increase capacity and build self-sufficiency, we foster pro-active artisans, able to conduct business in a larger marketplace.
We offer multiple resources in support of indigenous artisans' efforts to improve their lives, and the lives of their families:
- Basic business training
- Support with financial management
- Product development
- Costing and pricing
- Quality control mechanisms for export market standard
- Management skills
- Leadership and conflict-resolution training
- Literacy workshops
"At the beginning of the literacy workshop, I was nervous and felt that I could not write on the blackboard in front of the whole class. But now I have confidence and I can identify letters and words, I am proud of myself."
- Sebastiana, artisan from CHUWILA and participant in Education & Empowerment 101
"I'm learning a lot about tourism which I like a great deal. I hope to be able to have visitors stay at my house, and I am learning how to make that possible."
— Vicenta, artisan from Flor Juanera and participant in EntreMundo's workshop series on Sustainable Community Tourism