In order to pay for the workshop materials and presenter, I applied for a grant from Peace Corps. Thank goodness Peace Corps has a partnership with USAID to fund projects like this. Although I only needed a small amount of money by American standards, the amount needed was out of reach for the local cooperative. One of the business program staff at Peace Corps helped me get in touch with a teacher who is an expert in natural dyes and a wonderful teacher. (She traveled over 20 hours to reach our village for the workshop!) Despite the fact that the teacher, Amina, spoke only Arabic, she was able to use many visuals and the women understood each step very well.
|Amina showing one of the colors - I think this one is madder root.|
|All of these colors were created using materials available locally. Most can be picked for free in our village fields.|
Thank goodness Linda, another PCV who lives in a neighboring village, was able to come and help out at the workshop on the first day. She helped take pictures, organize the materials and keep me company (since neither of us understood arabic, we spent most of the lesson lost.) The picture below is of Linda holding up one of the colors.
|Linda, a PCV from the neighboring village, came to help out on Day 1 of the workshop|
|This is my favorite color from the workshop. It was created from a bush that grows along the roadside in this area. The bush is the color of a redbud tree, but creates this amazing violet on the wool.|
Thanks to everyone who helped me make this workshop a reality. I hope the women use these new skills to create new carpet designs with a natural dye color palette. Keep your fingers crossed their enthusiasm continues and they really take advantage of their new skills.