TULI - WEAR JEWELRY AND CHANGE LIVES ACROSS THE WORLD
Posted on August 14 2017
Finding a way to make a difference in the world means different things to everyone, some people open their wallets, others become so completely transformed by an experience it becomes personal. The founder of Tuli fits in that category and because of her journey, has made it easy for everyone to join her mission.
Megan Kitt found her mission while on assignment in Uganda as a journalist. She saw women there making beads out of old paper and trying to sell them at local markets; but unfortunately there weren't many buyers. She quickly reached out to several local women and created Tuli.
According to Kitt, Tuli is a word in Luganda, one of the languages spoken in Uganda, that means "we are." "The idea behind Tuli’s name is that everyone can take part in fighting global poverty. Every Tuli product provides a fair wage for the woman who made it and the partner artisans are able to feed their families, educate their children, and save for the future."
"One thing that makes Tuli different from other similar social businesses and charities is that we don’t provide short-term jobs. Many similar organizations hire artisans for several months or two years under the banner of skills development, but we’ve seen firsthand that knowing how to make jewelry doesn’t yield much income in Uganda."
"So, once they’re hired with Tuli, as long as they produce high-quality work, we let them work with us as long as they’d like. Some of our artisans use their money to finish their education and get another job. That’s great! We’re sad to see people go, but when they do, that’s a success in our book. Other artisans stay with us their entire working lives, and that’s great too: They send their children to school and can provide for their families in a way they never could."
HOW TO MAKE PAPER BEADS
Find paper to recycle into the beads
Cut into thin strips
Roll tightly into beads
Hand paint each bead & let dry
Coat each bead with a water based varnish
Wire wrap, thread on wire or string beads into beautiful fair trade jewelry
Recently Tuli has branched out into other jewelry including cast metals made in Nairobi, Kenya, including their incredibly popular brass stacking rings and the the Megumi cuff. The clean, modern lines of the jewelry are a great addition to Tuli's original offerings and difficult to keep in stock.
But that's something that makes Megan Kitt incredibly happy. "Tuli provides style and quality comparable to large retail chains combined with a social mission that’s unforgettable. Our artisans are able to feed their families, educate their children, and rise out of poverty. " That's a mission we can definitely get behind.