Shop for a Cause with Imani Workshops and Global Gifts
Imani Workshops was created by AMPATH in 2005 to provide sustainable income opportunities to HIV-positive women in western Kenya.
What started as a small shop, now employs over 100 people. Imani employees now also include individuals with disabilities and more broadly those who receive medical treatment and support from AMPATH. Ninety percent of those employed with Imani are women.
Since 2013, Global Gifts has led efforts to grow the sales of Imani’s handmade items in the US, and more importantly to help Imani grow. “Having products that shoppers in the US desire is key to growing sales, which translates to more employment and resources available through Imani,” said Sam Carpenter, executive director of Global Gifts.
Barb Zech, Indianapolis artist and long-time Imani supporter, traveled to Eldoret this summer to work with the artisans to develop new designs and provide training to produce these new designs. Necklaces, a bracelet, and scarves made from recycled t-shirts are among the results of Barb’s trip, and these items are available for this holiday season at Global Gifts. “We are especially excited when the folks at Imani share their own designs with us,” said Carpenter. “The recently added red bib necklace is a great example of that.”
Global Gifts has been an important and stable partner with Imani, which has also allowed them to focus on and grow their Kenyan sales. “Some of our strongest growth has come from sales in Kenya,” says Scott VanKirk, long-time volunteer with Imani who has helped oversee operations at the workshop for many years. This type of market diversity is key to Imani’s long term success.
Give the gift of hope this holiday season with a purchase from Imani Workshops!