Gimaguas + Bassari Africa
Gimaguas is a brand that sells artisanal goods from around the world. They carefully select products made by artisans mainly from Africa, Latin America and India. A brand of treasures and unique pieces from remote places that follows no trends but their love for craftsmanship.
An NGO based in Bassari Country, a remote zone in Senegal. They work to provide women with the tools that will allow them to be self-sufficient enough to improve the current and future living conditions of their community.
Discover how NGO Bassari Africa is empowering women in Senegal
NGO Bassari Africa is located at Afia. It is around 17h away from Dakar by car.
Bassari Country is a zone with poor resources, but full of beautiful Baobabs, the Senegalese tree.
We went to visit the NGO and the collective of women they are working for. At one of their ateliers, a really humble one, we encouraged their daughters to draw whatever sprang their minds while their mothers worked on batik. Those drawings became their creative contribution and the seed of this collaboration.
When turning 12, girls in Bassari Country have to spend 4 hours every day to get water and other 4 hours grinding the grain, which makes them impossible to access school.
This is the bag we have created together with Gimaguas and NGO Bassari Africa. It wears the drawings the little girls created at the humble atelier. 100% of its benefits will be destined to build a new batik workshop to help their mothers access a proper job and empower Senegalese women.
This is the collective of women that works the traditional Senegalese batik. They have to work in really poor conditions, no light and scarce water.
NGO Bassari Africa believes Bassari women are leading the transformation of a society marked by inequality and lack of opportunities. They work to build water wells, provide mills to the most remote towns and they have already promoted a water, nutrition and hygiene program in this community. They now need funds to create a sewing and crafts workshop for 30 women that will enable them to access a proper job, which means independence and freedom.
Thanks to NGO Bassari Africa they have learned how to sew and now they are ready to manufacture their own dresses to preserve the traditional Senegalese batik.
Together with the NGO we taught them hand block printing. In return, they taught us their ancestral batik technique.
She's Aissatou, a great batik professional.
Together with Gimaguas we designed two bags to help raise the funds the NGO needs to help the collective of women in Afia. Here you can see the drawings of their daughters printed on the fabric. With this simple item the little girls of the village participate in an action to empower women. And thanks to the influence of the brand Gimaguas, this bag gives visibility to the inequality that women suffer at Senegal. With its purchase, we will help NGO Bassari Africa in its objective to develop projects focused on the professional improvement of the female community.
With the purchase of the bags you get a bracelet made by the girls at the NGO. Wear it as a symbol of your support :)
Women in Bassari Country invest a full day of work to perform basic tasks such as carrying water and grinding grain. Through the construction of wells and mills the NGO has not only improved their living conditions substantially, but given them the time to develop a job. With that time they can now work on their batik.
This is an example of what they are capable of. They do an amazing work.
Workingwomen in Africa invest 90% of their income in their families, in comparison with the 35% of men.
Bassari Africa's next objective is to build a new and professional workshop where women will be able to work batik under secure and healthy conditions. This new atelier will give them the opportunity to develop their craft and make a living out of it. They will professionalize and enter Dakar's fashion market.
The NGO gave two goats to the women collective in Afia. A microcredit like that helps to move the economy of the area, and encourages women to organize themselves into groups and earn a living in various ways, including exercising as cattle breeder.
Through the purchases of the Gimaguas bags, we will hopefully raise up to 10.000€ to build the new batik workshop.
The substantial improvement that has taken place in the area thanks to the work of the girls and the NGO has opened the eyes of men. It is wonderful to see how they also believe in the power of women and collaborate in their projects!
With the new workshop these women will opt for a self-managed future where they wont’t have to depend on the NGO anymore : )
While in our stay in Afia, we organised a runway so the girls could show their designs. Women from villages around came to see. That simple runway gave them the opportunity to boost out their work and share their confidence with other women.
Thanks for reading! Bye, bye.