The Awamaki Weaving Project works with impoverished Quechua women
weavers to improve their skills and increase their access to market,
thereby revitalizing an endangered weaving tradition while affording
Quechua women with a reliable source of income. We operate on fair trade
principles and buy directly from weavers at a price that is mutually
negotiated, thus setting a standard for fair pricing in the region. We
then sell these textiles at our volunteer-operated fair trade store in
Profits that are made through the sale of weavings are reinvested back
into the project and the community, providing educational support to
school-age weavers, allowing us to maintain an emergency medical
expenses fund for the women and their children, and funding
capacity-building workshops and field-trips for the weavers. Through
Awamaki, the weavers have a consistent source of income that enables
them to better care for their families’ needs, as well as affording them
a higher degree of financial independence. Textile sales also cover the
regular operating costs of the project, leaving us fully self-funded,
sustainable and independent.
The goals of the Awamaki Weaving Project are to:
- revitalize the endangered weaving tradition by giving market access to rural weavers
create a place for Andean weaving in a new modernizing economy by
marketing textiles to tourists and seeking international avenues of sale
- recuperate and develop further technical knowledge of natural dyes and the weaving process
- improve the well-being of the weavers, their families and their communities
The Awamaki Weaving Project operates a volunteer-operated fair trade
store in Ollantaytambo, and a weaving center in the central Quechua
community of Patacancha. The weaving center was built by the weavers and
their family members in a traditional work party faena, in
partnership with Awamaki, which provided materials and volunteer labor.
The center serves as a place for the weavers to meet and weave, a place
to hold workshops, and a visiting center for student and tourist groups.
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