OkawaAfricanBeads

Okawa African handmade beads and components

Denver, Colorado | 850 Sales

OkawaAfricanBeads

Okawa African handmade beads and components

Denver, Colorado 850 Sales On Etsy since 2013

5 out of 5 stars
(408)

Announcement   We are the original source for these handmade beads from Namibia. Beads that make a difference!

Sales benefit Work Of Our Hands Namibia, a not for profit development project for marginalized African women . Our mission is to teach skills, while providing income and hope to women previously unemployable due to little or no education. We also employ younger women who need flexible work while studying for future careers.

Jewelry, ceramic components and ceramic beads were designed by me and made by myself and ladies in my Namibian women's project.. ( Check out the new ABOUT page)

We use fair trade principles, paying a living wage and making the workplace a safe and fun place to work. ( We passed the rigorous qualification process and are now proud members of the Fair Trade Federation.)
Ladies receive a "13th month" bonus at the end of the year to help them with children's school fees. They work by the piece, so they are able to set their own hours and take off work when necessary.

We use paper clay for most of our colorful beads, which makes it 25% lighter weight than traditional all clay beads. The paper burns out in firing.

NEED CUSTOM ORDER : SEE COLOR CHOICES HERE : http://okawa-beads.wix.com/okawa-beads

You are invited to view my personal ETSY shop where i sell my ceramic sculpture. https://www.etsy.com/shop/ValGarberCeramics

Announcement

Last updated on May 11, 2018

We are the original source for these handmade beads from Namibia. Beads that make a difference!

Sales benefit Work Of Our Hands Namibia, a not for profit development project for marginalized African women . Our mission is to teach skills, while providing income and hope to women previously unemployable due to little or no education. We also employ younger women who need flexible work while studying for future careers.

Jewelry, ceramic components and ceramic beads were designed by me and made by myself and ladies in my Namibian women's project.. ( Check out the new ABOUT page)

We use fair trade principles, paying a living wage and making the workplace a safe and fun place to work. ( We passed the rigorous qualification process and are now proud members of the Fair Trade Federation.)
Ladies receive a "13th month" bonus at the end of the year to help them with children's school fees. They work by the piece, so they are able to set their own hours and take off work when necessary.

We use paper clay for most of our colorful beads, which makes it 25% lighter weight than traditional all clay beads. The paper burns out in firing.

NEED CUSTOM ORDER : SEE COLOR CHOICES HERE : http://okawa-beads.wix.com/okawa-beads

You are invited to view my personal ETSY shop where i sell my ceramic sculpture. https://www.etsy.com/shop/ValGarberCeramics

Valarie Garber

Contact shop owner

Valarie Garber

View all 63 items

Reviews

Average item review
5 out of 5 stars
(408)
See reviews that mention:
quality 43 shipping 115 customer service 101
View all 408 reviews

About

AMERICAN GIRL IN AFRICA

I moved with my husband to Namibia from the USA in December 2002. Seeing the poverty and unemployment motivated me to make a difference if I could. Since the only thing I'm really good at, is art , and also craft design, it made sense to start there. I began teaching a small group of unemployed ladies to make paper mache bowls, and another group to do bead work.

I was inspired by a development project named Zenzele in South Africa. Zenzele teaches employment skills to the unemployed in the Khayelitsha community, a Cape Town squatters camp of at least 1 million people. While touring their facility I commented that I wished something like it existed in Namibia. I'll never forget the answer. My guide said, "well it started here 15 years ago with one lady and a sewing machine."The message was clear, no excuses, just start! And as they say the rest is history :)…

Our mission is to provide skills development and income to unemployed women. There are two types of women we help. One group is older and under educated. They speak only a tribal language so they are virtually unemployable without some kind of intervention or training. The second group of women are younger, and are studying and working toward a future career, yet need flexible employment to support themselves while doing so. We provide a safe flexible work environment where the women can mostly make their own schedules and work as much or as little as they need to.

Please know that your purchase makes a difference in real peoples lives; each women helped has a family she is often supporting alone,and her salary goes for the very basics needed to live. Also know that we pay a living wage to all of our workers, and abide by Fair Trade principles.

Shop members

  • Valarie Garber

    Owner, Maker, Designer, Creative Director

    B.A. ( Before Africa) I had many creative endeavors,sculptor, interior designer, craft designer to name a few. Since 2002 I have been living in Namibia whereI founded Work Of Our Hands, a skills and job creation project for marginalized women.

  • Isabella Shilongo

    Maker, Production Manager

    Isabella grew up in a real African village ( thatch roofed huts and everything) in Northern Namibia. She has been my translator since 2003 and production manager since 2007. She also runs her own small business Ciao Bella.

  • Lucia II

    Maker

    Lucia's baby Alena is now about 8 years old, so Lucia has been with us quite awhile. She is currently in training to manage the ceramic bead production

  • Fenny

    Maker

    Fenny knows bead crochet as well as ceramic bead making

  • Amalia

    Maker

    Excellent at bead crochet, Amalia has been with us since the beginning

  • Hildigard

    Maker

    A bead crochet maker, Hildigard has also been with us since the begining

  • Olivia

    Maker

    Olivia makes earrings as well as ceramic beads

  • Hilya

    Maker

    Hilya is our bookkeeper, but also helps out with jewelry when we are in a pinch

  • Lucia I

    Maker

    Ceramic bead maker

  • Caroline

    Maker

    Caroline is an expert at bead crochet

  • Helena

    Maker

    Helena is a ceramic bead maker

  • Loyde

    Maker

    Loyde is a ceramic bead maker

  • Selma

    Maker

    Selma is a ceramic bead make

Production partners

  • Work Of Our Hands

    Namibia

    Namibia is a developing African nation with high unemployment and some quite marginalized persons,with little education and no hope of a job. The mission of Work Of Our Hands is to provide hope and dignity to these individuals thru skills training

Shop policies

Last updated on April 12, 2016
Welcome, We hope you enjoy some eye candy, and find something beautiful to take home, where I hope you feel the vibes, the love and artistic passion that went into the making ! You can also feel good about making a difference with your purchase.

Accepted payment methods

  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • American Express
  • Discover
  • Apple Pay
  • Klarna
  • Sofort
  • Ideal
  • Paypal
  • GiftcardAccepts Etsy Gift Cards and Etsy Credits
  • Check
Returns and exchanges
returns or exchanges must be within 2 weeks of receipt of order. Buyer pays all shipping on returns unless there is a problem with the item (damage etc.).
Payment
Paypal,personal check . direct check out
Sales tax applicable in Colorado unless you hold a valid sales tax license.
Shipping
I try to keep shipping to actual costs of the padded envelope plus the u.s.p.s. cost.
Will ship within 1- 3 days of payment.using USPS with delivery confirmation .
Out of USA shipping please contact me for quote as sometimes the listed cost turns out to be less.
INTERNATIONAL SALES: please check your countries' import fees before ordering as these fees will be your responsibility.

More information

Last updated on Apr 7, 2016
Frequently asked questions
Custom and personalized orders

I have many many more beads than listed and usually have at least 2 more sizes in the color and pattern listed. Feel free to ask for what you are looking for. Unless I am in Namibia ( usually 3 months in the North American summer) I will be happy to find what you want and take pictures if needed.