Craft Aid International empowers and supports people with disabilities in the UK and the developing world, creatively.
They run weekly therapeutic craft workshops for adults with disabilities in Harrogate, Ripon and Leeds, particularly people who are socially isolated and lack opportunities to meet others and learn new skills.
These sessions provide a fun and caring environment in which to work as part of a team towards a common goal. They also provide much needed-therapeutic activities for long-term hospital inpatients.
Craft Aid International director, Susie Hart MBE, originally founded a social enterprise in Tanzania called ‘Neema Crafts’. This centre started with just three young deaf men learning how to make hand-made paper from elephant dung, and now employs over 120 adults with a range of disabilities, making a wide variety of crafts.
Susie Hart said:
We want to pass this model on to other developing countries where people with disabilities are still living in abject poverty. Our first project is in Peru, where we are currently planting a new crafts centre to provide training and employment for disabled people living in poverty.
We were delighted to have a stall at the Knitting and Stitching Show this year, where visitors had the opportunity to buy high-quality craft products made in the UK and Peru. Differently-able participants from our Harrogate craft sessions helped behind the counter and worked on the stand, teaching the public how to make beautiful fabric flower corsages from recycled materials.
For more information about the inspiring work they are doing, take a look at thewebsite: