Almost four years ago, somebody broke into the office of the textile cooperative “Tejidos Cotzal” in San Juan Cotzal, in Guatemala. With the help of our donation appeal, the organization was able to recover from this stroke of fate and a short while ago they opened their new community center.
The cooperative is a union of 45 women weavers, which are mostly widows due to the civil war. The most important objective of their work is to receive fair wages for their craft work in order to be able to improve their economic situation and provide for themselves and their families. Furthermore, they are working on the preservation of the Maya culture and their thousand-year-old craft.
The community center provides a new sales area for the women’s woven products as well as a kitchen and enough space for visitors of the Eco-tourism tours. On our visit in May 2017, Pedro, the project leader, told us about the ideas and plans of the cooperative for the extension of the community center. In the future, they want to open a hostel and a comedor, a small restaurant with traditional meals of the region, on the premises. With this plan, the cooperative wants to finance the purchase of material, which can be stored so they do not have to wait until the new wool is there to start the next order, as they have to travel a long distance to get to the city to buy material. Furthermore, the hostel should support the cooperative’s Eco-tourism and provide living space for volunteers. The comedor should give visitors the chance to get to know the healthy and traditional food.
The cooperative’s resources are limited, as they do not accept financial aid from the government because of corruption and the fear of losing their own values. Therefore, the work on the extension of the community center goes slowly and needs breaks when the situation is not good enough.
Proyecto Mosaico is in regular contact with the responsible persons of the project, recommends their great products and is supporting the cooperative for more than ten years by finding volunteers for them. With this donation appeal, we want to support the organization so they can convert their goals, extend the community center and get closer to their dream “to grow like a tree high into the sky”.
After the last donation appeal of Proyecto Mosaico, which took place after the robbery in 2013, we visited the cooperative. As a result, we made a very nice film, which shows the women’s work and the organization’s gratefulness: https://youtu.be/Oa8nvLM5Ycs