Meet Nokuthula Dlamini, from Lavumisa. She shares her story through the art of poetry: Gone Rural, tell me, who are you? Are you taking care of the orphans? Look, I’m seeing the women. What are they doing? They are weaving, they are weaving. Read the full poem here: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=598684266811378=a.511528592193613.123196.163344093678733=1
Meet Siphiwe Kunene, 32 from Mahlanya: "I have been weaving Gone Rural products since 2011, following in my mother’s footsteps just before she passed away. I feel privileged I had the opportunity to inherit my mother’s skills. My mother also learnt from her mother and in that way we complete the three faces of #GoneRural, which represent the passing of skills from generation to generation. I feel so empowered as a young woman! I wish to pass this on to other women of my age."
Meet Salaphi Mazibuko, from Mahlabatsini: "I am one of the hard-working & empowered women in my community & it all started after joining Gone Rural, 20 years ago. I would also like to thank Gone Rural boMake for helping me educate my kids. My family is living a better life & happy. Thank you #GoneRural!"
Meet Tobhi Vilakati, from Mahlabatsini: “I started working with Gone Rural seven years ago, weaving table and floor mats, which I learnt from my aunt. I like working with #GoneRural and it gives me time to run other small businesses. I also make brooms and sell them at the nearest town – which brings a second smile to my face! I would like to see my kids becoming empowered and independent in the future – like me! I am an empowered woman!"
Meet Ndzandza Magagula, from Dlangeni: "I am an old woman but still working with Gone Rural. I started a long time ago when I was much stronger, doing placemats & floormats. Doing this work has helped me a lot as a widow & living with more than 4 orphans (which are my grandchildren). What I love most is that my daughter followed my footsteps as she also joined #GoneRural."
Meet Cecilia Zwane: "I am a 60 year old grandmother & I have been weaving Gone Rural products since 1999. #GoneRural has continuously helped me to be financially independent. My family is huge: we are more than 18! Some of my kids have followed my footsteps & are also doing work with Gone Rural. I will continue to partner with Gone Rural & save the money I am earning; that will help my boys to buy materials to do some repairs on my house!"
Meet Thandukwazi Jele, from Mahlanya: "I started working with Gone Rural in 1994 and I am one of the sample makers. is my pillar of strength and I now have a beautiful home and a happy family through Gone Rural.
Meet Jabu Sibandze: "I am 33, from Malkerns. I started working with Gone Rural in 2005, weaving almost everything, as I am one of the sample makers. The money I get satisfies me, as I am able to look after my two kids. I don’t think I would be still alive if it was not for #GoneRural. Gone Rural is everything to me."
Meet Bongiwe Gama from Zulwini: "I started working with Gone Rural 4 years ago, weaving placemats & coasters. My life is amazing & flowing because of #GoneRural. I am now able to take care of my family, as my husband is not working. May God bless Gone Rural & everyone involved."
Meet Tholakele Gina, 40 years old from Lavumisa: "I started working with Gone Rural in 2005, weaving Lavumisa-style baskets. I was doing handcraft before, but since I joined #GoneRural there is a big difference. I can see the progress in my financial life & in my weaving skills. Life used to be hard because I am the third wife of my husband & he has never been able to cater for us all equally. Gone Rural has given me the opportunity to be independent."
Meet Smangele Dlamini, from Lobamba Lomdzala: "I started working with Gone Rural 10 years ago when I was 19, following my mother’s footsteps. I am doing more the wire products. I like listening to gospel music while weaving & my wish is to become a social worker, as #GoneRural has motivated me on caring for others."
Meet Vuyisile Mdziniso, from Dlangeni: "I am a disciplined & hard working woman with 8 kids. Even though it’s been only 3 years I joined the family, it has done a lot for me. In my spare time, I also make different things like brooms & bags.
Meet Gladys Dlamini from Nsingweni: "I am an empowered woman, a preacher, a helpful wife & a good mother through Gone Rural. I started working with #GoneRural many years ago, as one of the potters & it has changed my life completely as I am now an independent woman & motivational speaker."
Meet Zamakholo Matsebula from Edlangeni: "I started working with Gone Rural a few years ago. has done tremendous things for me. I like sharing my weaving skills & motivational stories with other young mothers.
"I am Zanele Simelane, 57 yrs old from Emdlangwe. I started working with Gone Rural 19 years ago, weaving. #GoneRural is like a gift to me, as it helped me take care of my grandchildren. I love singing gospel while weaving. I would love to see Gone Rural growing, and to keep supporting and empowering the rural women."