ABV believes that enabling people to build small businesses is an important way to bring about more inclusive economic growth, and is a powerful means of relieving poverty – which is why ABV organised for Sue McCuaig to undertake a handicrafts and product marketing trainer assignment in New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea.
35 jewellery artisans from the Nusalik community, most of whom are women, received training in handicrafts and jewellery-making using mother of pearl during Sue’s assignment. The assistance has enabled the artisans, to learn new skills to increase their income generating opportunities from selling shell jewellery to tourists by improving quality and economic value, and to use sustainable production methods.
“They have already been making jewellery for years but it has been sparking their ideas and trying to inspire and then hone what they have done, that is what I have been trying to do,” said Sue.
Lucy Victor, who attended some workshops at Panakonda village in Nusalik Island, said: “The training has been very good because it has shown me skills and new ways of doing things that I have never done before.”
According to Artisan William Kepas: “Before we used to rely on fishing for an income but today it is this handicraft business that pays our children’s schools fees and other basic needs. Sue’s training helped us a lot, we learnt some new designs and have been challenged to do things differently from what we would normally do. A lot of people are buying the new designs we have created through this training.”
Sue completed her workshop using materials provided through the Australian High Commission’s Direct Aid Program, and her assignment was funded via the Australian Volunteers for International Development program – an Australian Government initiative.