How you give a gift makes a difference - from a handmade card with a heartfelt message to beautifully-wrapped gift tucked under the Christmas tree. As we approach one of the busiest periods of the year, with both Christmas and the organising of end-of-year gifts around the corner, it can be tricky to find ethical and sustainable gifting options.
By purchasing at the Hamlin Shop you can ensure your gifts are of high standard and fair trade. Not only will your purchase be unique, it will also help eradicate obstetric fistula in Ethiopia.
Make your message to friends and families even more meaningful with an ethical and sustainable card. New to the Hamlin Shop, just in time for Christmas, are these delightful cards handcrafted by Kenyan artisans. Lilian Omondi and her team hand-make each card from upcycled materials of wire and metal, accompanied by colourful beads. The cards are formed by shaping wire to express messages and depict vibrant flowers, figures and butterflies. The Handmade Greeting Cards from Kenya come in a pack of five, containing two flower cards, two birthday cards and a thank you card, while the Handmade Christmas Cards from Kenya features five festively-themed cards.
When Lilian’s father died at the age of nine, Lilian left school to support her family. Lilian lives in Kisumu, where 100-year-old houses are in the process of being demolished to build new government-built houses and tenants are currently in the process of being evicted. Lilian is a single mother to two children and owns a souvenir shop for tourists visiting the area's natural attractions. Due to COVID-19 she has had to close her shop.
Lilian now focuses on using her creative talent to produce products, through collecting soft drink cans and upcycling the materials to form figures to sell. She has since begun fashioning the figures onto hand-cut greeting cards. Through purchasing a pack of Lilian’s cards you will be helping Lilian support her family, pay rent, put her children through school and will also be supporting up to 20 local artisans that help to create these wonderful greeting cards.
The Hamlin Shop also offers acclaimed Australian artist Wendy Sharpe’s Art Collection Cards that depict Ethiopian street scenes and the healing process of Hamlin patients. Wendy Sharpe witnessed first-hand the life-changing work of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia and painted a collection of pastel and gouache artworks. These greeting cards depict several of Wendy’s artworks. Learn more about her journey to Ethiopia and Wendy’s art exhibition with Hamlin here.
There are also our popular Hamlin Greeting Cards that are full of joy. These beautiful cards are versatile - they can be used as Christmas cards, thank you cards or ‘just thinking of you’ cards. The greeting cards depict pictures of patients from Hamlin’s Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital whose lives have been transformed thanks to Hamlin supporters. By purchasing a pack of five greeting cards, you are both contributing to the fight to eradicate obstetric fistula and also sharing the story of the brave, beautiful fistula patients at Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia.
Pair your present with ethical high quality glossy gift wrap paper in designs that represent the Hamlin Model of Care. The Gift Wrap - Crochet design is based on shawls that are handmade for Hamlin patients when they arrive at Hamlin’s Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital. The Gift Wrap - Blanket design replicates the handmade shawls patients receive on their return home after their dignity is restored. Finish off your gift in signature style with a crochet design gift tag.
Purchase a gift this Christmas that guarantees joy. The Hamlin Shop’s fair trade and ethical gifts are both special to the receiver and to the artisans that skilfully craft your item. You can contribute to something positive this Christmas by purchasing from the Hamlin Shop and helping share our goal to eradicate fistula. Forever.
Written by Madeleine Crothers, intern at Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation.