Dorotea & Roxana live in a small village on the outskirts of Panama City. At the time we visited Roxana was heavily pregnant with her second child, and a toddler running around at her feet. The mother and daughter weaving team showed us the masks that were under construction, looking like 3-D line drawings with rounded bundles of dried palm twisted into round shapes.
The weavers lived in a roughly assembled house, down a long narrow path and through a small walkway along the side of the house. Their cinder block house was only a few small rooms, with everyone living in the same spaces. We were visiting with our school aged twins, who chased the chickens around out back, in-between large plastic barrels and another cinder block house under construction. There were ladders, wheelbarrows, and plastic bags strewn about. It was an undiscovered treasure of play land for the kids.
Dorotea & Roxana told us they weave masks as a basic source of income. And they have been doing well, much better than before we starting purchasing from them. In fact their family has made as much from mask weaving in the 6 recent months than they had made in the past 6 years. Working with these weavers we are proud to hear they are better able to support their family, plan for the future, and have more income stability.