The world has many holidays to be celebrated, many guests to be welcomed, many special occasions to be recognized and many accomplishments to honor. In other words, there are many good reasons to hold a feast. Last Saturday, the women of Batsiranai held a feast to an honor an accomplishment – their own.
I have been meaning to write about this amazing group of women for a long time. The members of Batsiranai are mothers of disabled children who live in a township on the outskirts of
Such circumstances would overwhelm the best of us. But Batsiranai means “helping each other” in Shona, and helping each other is the core of what these women do. By helping each other, the Batsiranai mothers have established a successful craft-making enterprise that enables their families to thrive. They sew, paint and embroider many different items – tote bags, purses, bookmarks, baby quilts, baby bibs, bottle-cap earrings, greeting cards and more. Attached to the women’s workshop is a day care centre where their children can rest and play while they work. A nearby hospital has an outreach team which regularly visits the center to talk to parents about how to help their children grow and develop. Batsiranai has other “helpers,” too, including volunteers who’ve made the day care center a welcoming place through colorful painting and donations of toys; volunteers who’ve connected them to retail markets outside of
And what was the menu for this feast? Beef, beef and more beef, plus sadza, cole slaw and a tomato and onion relish. And, just as important as the food, the feast was preceded by hours and hours and hours of singing and dancing.
You might not be able to make it to Batsiranai’s next feast, but you can certainly honor these women’s accomplishments by buying their fair trade-certified products. Their products are of very high quality, and make excellent gifts! Simply visit www.batsiranai.co.zw.