Lillian is one of the first people I met in Kenya. If you look at the photos here, you will see some of her in a red shirt with the children playing in front of her - that was my first day in Kenya in 2012. I had no idea how much these people would come to mean to me over the next few years.
Lillian has had a hard life, but is so full of joy and is amazing. She is a single mom caring for her five children, three orphans and a grandchild. Her top priority is to see all the children go to school. Damaris, Lillian’s good friend said this about Lillian: “She does not give up, even when situation is difficult.” She works hard to meet her family’s needs and does so with a smile.
We asked Lillian “How has working with JustOne helped?” She answered that it helps her pay rent, provides orders to make, helps with the children’s education and their daily bread.
We love how this group of artisans cares for each other. After we did a micro-finance loan for their new workshop, they asked us about a similar thing to help Lillian out. We found someone who would do a micro-finance loan for her! The group helped her find a home to purchase in the slums so that the weight of paying rent could be lifted and hopefully she can begin to rent part out to be a landlady herself. The group as a whole pays the loan, deducting a percentage from each order we place to pay it back. They wanted to support their friend Lillian in this way - we think that’s beautiful.
Lillian works hard making the bone jewelry and we are proud to partner with her!
Note about the photo shown here: Lillian proudly holding her birth certificate that we helped all our Kenyan artisan partners receive!