Weaving Hope


Weaving Hope was set up following a family sabbatical in Sri Lanka, volunteering in local communities where our children attended school for a term. While there we saw some beautiful bright woven toys unlike anything we had seen at home. After discussions with the lady who had set up the company we discovered they were Fair Trade, and were invited on a tour of the factory. By the time we left we were utterly captivated and felt compelled to see what we could do to help.
The "Weaving Factories" as they call them are utterly unrecognisable from factories as we know them: clusters of handlooms under shelter from the rain and sun, but open sided and surrounded by coconut, banana, mango, papaya and jak fruit groves.  Beans and squash also grow in the vicinity.  The vast majority of the work is done by local women, which was the aim of the project.  Employment in rural Sri Lanka was so sparse that women (wives and mothers) were travelling far from the home to find work.  Some even work as far away as Dubai in housekeeper positions sending money home for their children to be looked after. 
Being cotton it is biodegradable, washable gentle and soft. Gentle textures with bright and stimulating colours make the toys ideal for children and really help stimulate imaginative play. The colours are dyed in before weaving so they wash really well - especially useful in a child's apron!
We marvelled at the skill of the women, a whole day is spent setting up the looms, and when we tried the weaving the gentle rhythmic clacking of shuttle was interrupted, and the cloth lacked the uniform tension that is essential.
All of these factors made us keen to support the work done in Sri Lanka, but make no mistake, it was the eye catching brilliance of the colours and wit of the designs that caught our eyes.
So when you buy Weaving Hope gifts you get great value as you are giving a Present and a Future.