Two days ago I was in Bredasdorp, South Africa at the Kapula Candle & Ceramics Factory. Bredasdorp is a small farming community about 2 hours outside Cape Town. I was there doing some filming for a short video about Kapula and the people who work there. In speaking with various artisans for the video, our mission was echoed over and over – we ‘are’ making a difference to someone’s life.
Many of the women we interviewed are single moms. They told us how difficult it is to secure a job of any kind and how important their job is for them to be able to ‘just’ make ends meet, pay their rent and provide for their children. It is heart warming to hear them say they love their jobs because life at Kapula is like a ‘family’; it where they were taught their skills and as it takes at least 9 people to produce one hand poured and hand painted candle, they depend on each other. They always know when they are making product for Thumbprint Artifacts and are very proud to think that a candle or ceramic dish that they make at Kapula in Bredasdorp, South Africa, may show up on a table somewhere in the United States!
Now I am on a 36 hour airline journey (in the back of the plane!) and 9 hour time change from Cape Town to Las Vegas to attend a 4-day International Gift Show where Becky and I sell the Kapula products to retail gift shops, museums, art galleries, and the like. Sounds like a grueling journey for 4 days….. But as I think of those faces and stories that I just left behind at Kapula, suddenly it is not about the long journey, but about the satisfaction in knowing that we really are making a difference, one candle or one ceramic dish at a time. We really are helping these artisans with a route to market that would not be there if it wasn’t for the belief that Becky and I have in Thumbprint Artifacts. We really are helping to create job security and making a difference to someone’s life.
ps. If you’re interested, I plan to put the video on our website – stay tuned, I think you will find it enlightening.