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Decorations by Beautiful Localhands

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Christmas native scenes or crèches, Christmas bauble, garlands. Christmas also rhymes with the decorations that set the mood ahead of December 25th.  If you wish to transform your home on this auspicious occasion, keep this organization in mind: Beautiful LocalHands. Supported by Beachcomber since 2006, Beautiful LocalHands consists of 60 artisans from vulnerable communities. By giving them the responsibility of making Christmas more attractive, Beachcomber is also providing several women with the means to become financially autonomous and ensuring their integration into society.

The success of Beautiful LocalHands goes to Fondation Espoir Développement Beachcomber, which supports and accompanies this project. It is an opportunity for hundreds of talented hands to develop their creative skills and improve the quality of the products that they design for hotels, the tourists and Mauritians at large. These artisans use textile-based, coconut-based, bamboo-based and clay-based materials to model recycled handicraft.  They create unique products and offer buyers a selection of gifts and a wide range of souvenirs.

Highly valued by Beachcomber, this project was launched in 2006 and aims to offer small artisans an opening on the tourist and hotel market.  They managed to meet the quality expectations with the financial assistance of Fondation Espoir Développement Beachcomber. In addition to technical training, they were given production facilities. The Foundation also commercializes their products in the hotels and tourist boutiques. At the beginning of the project, most of the profits of Beautiful Local Hands came from Beachcomber. However, since 2015, they represent only 50% of the revenues. The organization has distinguished itself. Numerous external clients within Beachcomber’s network can vouch for the quality of the products and their positive impact on tourists.

Mastery and Excellence

 

Since 2013, the 60 artisans who work regularly with Fondation Espoir Développement Beachcomber regrouped under Beautiful LocalHands. Thirty of them use the different studios allocated to them in Phoenix (textile studio), La Gaulette (pottery and textile studio) and Bambous (coconut, paper and other recycled materials studio). The 30 other artisans are small autonomous entrepreneurs who make their own products under the aegis of Beautiful LocalHands.

Today, most of the artisans have their own clientele. Thanks to Beautiful LocalHands, they succeeded in broadening their network. Moreover, this project taught them how to offer first class quality work and thus, attract more customers. They can actually gauge their revenues from the level of quality and excellence that they have reached.

Beautiful LocalHands has a flexible structure. Its artisans can work from home or in the studios at their convenience. The organization is also ideal for elderly and disabled women who cannot operate within the confinements of a classic company.  Since they are given the option to earn a living, they feel valued and their self-esteem is strengthened. This project is an opportunity for them to break free from their isolation and meet other artisans. A platform for exchanges and sharing, Beautiful LocalHands provides them with a different perspective on themselves and their lives. They renew their resources and are better equipped to face the challenges that come their way.

Cultural Heritage

Most of the members of Beautiful LocalHands are women. They use their revenues to improve their conditions of living and those of their families and to cater for a better education for their children who subsequently increase their chances of getting a job. These women artisans are gradually breaking the intergenerational cycle of poverty. Relatives and other closely related individuals give a helping hand whenever the artisans have important orders to honor. So much so, that 55 artisans are now registered with Fondation Espoir Développement Beachcomber, which is financially sustained revenues generated from the local handicraft initiative.

Beyond the fact that it empowers, Beautiful LocalHands values Mauritian talents and broadens the scope for Destination Mauritius.  For instance, vacoas-based or coconut-based products highlight the country’s traditional handicraft techniques. They contribute to the preservation of the cultural heritage even more so since the use of vacoas leaves or coconut, guarantees the safeguard and the protection of these plants that are so necessary for the production of handicrafts.  Without knowing, these women artisans are also preserving the environment and biodiversity.

 

The office of Beautiful LocalHands is located in Curepipe. The products are displayed in a store in Trou aux Biches. A product sample is available at Boutique Rendez-Vous at La Croisette, Grand Bay. Check out its Facebook page for details!