If there's one thing you probably know about Mala and Mantra, it's that we not only create beautiful mala bead bracelets and necklaces but—more importantly—we also place a major focus on empowering women across the world. While that's evident in the mantras we create for each Mala and Mantra piece, it's especially evident in our work with a women’s co-op in the Philippines, where we help provide a group of female artisans with sustainable income and a better way of life for themselves, their families and their communities.
Because Mala and Mantra has this mission to empower and uplift women around the globe at our core, I was thrilled when I heard about the opportunity to help with the upcoming Empowering Women Folk Art Market at the San Diego Museum of Man.
The event, which takes place this Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, will feature a market packed full of amazing, handmade goods—from jewelry and scarves to woven baskets and paintings—from female artisans across the globe. Women’s groups from around the world will be in attendance, one of which is the Omba Arts Trust from Namibia, an organization that creates wares like woven baskets, beaded bags, linotype prints and eggshell jewelry.
I was fortunate enough to have the pleasure of meeting Omba Arts Trust founder Karin LaRoux recently and was fascinated to learn her story. Karin is from a 400-year-old Afrikaans-speaking family, and after returning from art school, she started a project to help the artisans throughout Namibia market their beautifully handcrafted wares. Karin has been helping the artisans of Namibia for more than 20 years and is an inspiration to me as I continue to empower artisans across the globe.
After meeting Karin and viewing the amazing Empowering Women exhibit at the Museum of Man several weeks ago, I knew I wanted to volunteer with this wonderful event to not only see all of the amazing pieces and items these female artisans create, but to offer my support and help empower these talented women.
So if you're in the San Diego area this weekend, Mala and Mantra would love to have your support at the Art Market—and I know these amazing female artisans would appreciate the support and empowerment, too.