His Mercies Tote
Made in: The Dominican Republic
Artisan Group: Manos Esforzadas
This tote bag, handmade by the artisans at Manos Esforzadas, is a daily reminder that His mercies are new every morning. It is the perfect size for carrying belongings to church, to work, to class or on errands, and makes a great gift for friends and family or simply to treat yourself for any occasion.
FMSC food partner Buckner International started Manos Esforzadas after realizing that there are so many Dominican women who struggle every day to raise their families and to find a successful form of employment. Many of the women of Manos Esforzadas sold empanadas in their community, offered upholstery services or Christmas decorations to their neighbors, but many times the empanadas were not sold, their neighbors were not interested in the upholstery or paid very little for the Christmas decorations that had taken so long to craft.
Manos Esforzadas began with just one woman, teaching her the techniques and the correct way to design a quality product. It has been a long, learning process since then, but today the program employs nine women as part of the project and they dream of seeing more and more women involved every day. Each artisan is paid a fair wage that enables them to provides for their families. Manos Esforzadas aims to renew themselves every day, thinking of new products that support these beautiful women.