I often pick up small items when travelling to put aside for Christmas gifts, and always look to support local crafts people, whether it’s from a roadside stall or dedicated artisans’ market. But this year, while purchasing some stunning carvings from Chile and the Tiwi Islands for my own home, I didn’t do so well with gifts for others.
So I was thrilled to learn about the beautiful handmade gifts from places like Ethiopia, Zimbabwe and Swaziland available through the Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia charity, which can be bought via their Australian Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia online shop or at their retail store in Turramurra, Sydney.
Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia aims to eliminate childbirth injuries through the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital and the Hamlin College of Midwives. So far they have helped over 43,000 women. You can read more about their story here. (I heard about them when one of my travel writing colleagues generously volunteered with the organisation this year.) As their work is funded purely on donations, purchasing their gifts not only supports the women who make them, but also raises funds for the foundation.
There’s still time to order online, or if you’d like to see the products before you buy, call into their store at 1396 Pacific Highway, Turramurra (between Vinnies and the 7/11 with parking at rear).
Items include homewares, scarves, jewellery, toys, spices and coffee. They also have a great selection of books, from Dr Catherine Hamlin’s inspirational story to children’s books. My order of salad servers, bowl and book was delivered promptly with a lovely personal note, and I’m looking forward to visiting the Turramurra store next time.
More: Inspiring young people to be philanthropic can be as easy as adding a care gift with their traditional presents. A $10 care gift card can provide a chicken or a packet of seeds for protein and income, $15 buys mosquito nets for a family or learning materials for a child and $20 buys a school uniform. It’s a great way to start a conversation about those less fortunate at a time when we all receive so much. Buy care gift cards online at World Vision Gifts or Care Gifts.