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Recycled Soda Can Jewelry

Eco Art by the Disabled

— May 18, 2008 — Eco
Most people know about fair trade coffee, but there are also fair trade artisans who stand to gain a better standard of living if what they produce fetches fair prices. The Mombulu Workshop in Mombasa, Kenya is a group of disabled artisans who make some pretty funky jewelry out of recycled soda pop cans and wire. They use pop can cut outs for the bodies of the little people they make. A whole string of pop can tops make a cool choker. The workshop's motto is “Disability is not Inability”. They are able to provide for themselves and their families and receive adequate housing and education.

The Mombulu Workshop markets their wares through Ten Thousand Villages, which is one of the oldest and largest of the Fair Trade organizations. Ten Thousand Villages represent more than 100 artisan groups in over 30 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Trend Themes
1. Fair Trade Artisans - The trend of fair trade artisans presents an opportunity for businesses to support disabled artisans and promote sustainable and ethical practices.
2. Recycled Fashion - The trend of creating fashion items from recycled materials opens up opportunities for businesses to tap into the growing market of environmentally conscious consumers.
3. Disability Empowerment - The trend of empowering individuals with disabilities through creative outlets like the Mombulu Workshop highlights the potential for businesses to champion inclusivity and diversity.
Industry Implications
1. Sustainable Fashion - The sustainable fashion industry can capitalize on the trend of using recycled materials to create unique and eco-friendly clothing and accessories.
2. Fair Trade Organizations - Fair trade organizations have the opportunity to expand their reach and support more artisan groups, like the Mombulu Workshop, in various countries.
3. Artisan Marketplaces - Online marketplaces that specifically cater to fair trade artisans can provide a platform for disabled artisans to sell their unique creations and reach a wider audience.
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