"Meeting the artisans who weave our backpacks: an Experiences that filled the soul"
Finally the day arrived, February 17, it was a day that I was waiting with great joy. It was a dream that would become a reality, to be able to visit La Guajira and even better getting to know the Wayuu communities up close as part of the mission of delivering school kits from Hilo Sagrado.
Sun, Culture, camaraderie, expectation, weaving, backpacks, collaboration would be the perfect description of what this adventure that I lived was.
How it started
As soon as I arrived in Riohacha, I met Monica, my company through this mission. We didn't know each other but we became friends and made a great team. As soon as I arrived, the entire agenda changed and everything we had planned from Bogotá had to be modified, because just that weekend there was a national strike and the kits did not arrive when we had planned. So it was time to “improvise” making decisions as we went by. I got a little stressed but at Hilo Sagrado I have learned that no matter the difficulties, we are all one team and we work for the same purpose, to empower women and communities.
The next day we met with the leaders of each community of artisans with whom the foundation works to carry through empowerment workshops. I was very excited because this was my first approach to the Wayuu community. I loved getting to know their ways of seeing the world, understanding the dynamics in which they live and understanding that the lifestyle is totally different from ours.
During this space we did a meditation exercise, it was a totally new activity for most of them and it was very gratifying to see how they became aware of the present and felt the calm that meditation brings. Although it is true that we are from two different cultures and we have different lifestyles, meditation is a practice that brings benefits to all of us.
The next day was one of the most exciting of the week because I went to one of the communities for the first time, we visited Jaririmana, which is located very close to Riohacha. I was happy, because your reception was very kind and cordial. I loved seeing the union that exists within the women of the community, the desire they have to learn, to be part of the foundation and to continue weaving quality backpacks full of love.
That day in the midst of the sand mists that came at us and interrupted the quality workshop that we were carrying out, we were able to make them aware of how important Hilo Sagrado is to us, to promote education because it can help transforming communities in a good way.
Then we went to Uyaraipa to carry through a quality workshop with them. This is a community that is located in the middle of the desert. It is a beautiful community, full of joy, an indescribable tranquility is breathed. It was beautiful to see the union between them, their willingness to learn and for the first time I felt lost when they spoke in Wayunaiki but I understood that a smile is the universal language.
That afternoon the kits finally arrived. So we left everything ready and the next day we woke up early to visit Ciruelakat, the largest community with which the foundation works. We imparted the quality workshop of the shoulder bags and delivered the kits. It was exciting to be part of the change and gratifying to see how they appreciate and value every contribution we can give them. Thus, being able to transmit that message of empowerment, of the importance and value of the work of each artisan. And especially to emphasize the importance of education for the development of communities.
The next day was the activity at Los Cabritos community. To me, this was the most special because it opened the doors for me to stay. Amalfi the leader of this community is the best hostess I have ever had. She and her family made me feel at home, part of the family. I love the family union that exists in the communities, the fact that they gather in their chinchorros to share their day. This made me reflect on the importance of this family union and what we have lost in the big cities due to the great hustle and bustle
Here we also gave away the school kits, again all super grateful. But we also started the socialization of a super project with moringa, which filled many families with happiness, since this will have benefits for the health and nutrition of children.
On the last day we woke up early again, to visit the last community, Urrachikat, again they welcomed us with open arms and showed us their commitment to the foundation. Then we returned to jarijirimana and Uyaraipa to deliver the school kits which filled us with joy to see all these children receiving kits.
This experience that Hilo Sagrado gave me was really beneficial for me. It is a win-win approach where we realize that we all have something to learn from each other. That Hilo Sagrado is an ally of the communities so that they can fulfill their goals and dreams