Amani ya Juu
Amani ya Juu, Swahili for "Higher Peace", is a sewing/marketing training project for Rwandese women in need. This project started in Nairobi in 1996 with three women and has grown to over 50 women from many ethnic groups in Africa.
The intimate workshop is located in the Gikondo area of Kigali. However, the women working there come from Congo, Burundi, Uganda as well as Rwanda. I went to visit today and checked out all the cool products that are made out of local African textiles (kitenge, batik, and tie dye). Tote bags, quilts, placemats, toys and jewelry are just a few of the treasures you will find here. I had this really cool traditional dress made of Congolese fabric and will rock it at an upcoming Rwandan wedding in a few weeks.
As a fair-trade, self-sustaining project, generated income is used to provide support for the women and their families as well as the operational expenses at the center. None of the proceeds are used by expats assisting with the project.