A Picturesque Adventure10 Jun 2016, Posted by Blog in
Everything was a National Geographic photo waiting to happen.
The Andes Mountain Range of Peru… all patterned with bright colors. There is the smell of lavender and eucalyptus in the air. The peaks, the hills, the valleys and the canyons are certainly worth a photograph.
Most picturesque of all though, were the people. Men and women alike wore hard-brimmed wool hats to keep warm and block the sun. The children all had bright red cheeks, chapped from wind and sunburn. It looked painful, but at the same time was so telling of the harsh environment in which they live.
In these villages more than 13,000 feet above sea level, we saw indigenous women sewing the most beautiful works of art by hand with an amazing organization called Threads of Hope.
They spun these vibrant yarns by hand from alpaca wool. They dyed the wool with natural elements like a white fungus that grows on cactus, but when smashed, is bright red. The patterns they embroidered were of beautiful flowers I couldn’t identify. They picked a fresh one to show us and it looked a cross between a tulip and a maypop, dainty but exotic.
Though we were exhausted by 16-hour filming days, this was perhaps our most rewarding project we’d worked on in our three months as missionary storytellers in Peru.
We had the opportunity to see how Threads of Hope has empowered women by buying and reselling their handicrafts in the States for much more than they’d get by selling them in Peru. Also, 100 percent of the profits go straight back to these artisans. We saw how this partnership with the women was improving their lives and giving them hope for the future for the first time.
To see these women who were once living in urban poverty, now living in two-story proper homes and sending their children to law school, was truly inspiring.
This is exactly what my husband and I have been called to do in this season of our lives. Sure it’s a beautiful, picturesque adventure, but what we are ever so passionate about is telling the stories of small ministries that are making a big impact.
I highly recommend checking out Threads of Hope and all their beautiful handmade crafts by even more beautiful people.