Meet Josephine T.

 

“It is good when others buy our jewelry,” Josephine told us, “because they will remember the woman who made it. In spite of what she has gone through in life, she can learn to do something beautiful.”

Josephine’s life is certainly proof that her statement is true.

Born in the Philippines as the oldest of four siblings, the Filipina was expected to help provide for her family—so she began working as a pick-up girl, whose job was to entertain customers in bars and use seduction to convince them to spend more money.

After a time, however, Josephine was introduced to our partner organization Samaritana, who help provide exploited women with the job skills, counselling, and spiritual care they need for a dignified life.

The young woman continued her other job one night a week to make more money, and spent her days with the organization learning how to make jewelry and receiving counselling.

After six months, Josephine quit the sex industry altogether.

“It takes a lot of perseverance and courage to change,” the young woman told us.

At first, her life at Samaritana was uncomfortable and Josephine was intimidated by the counselling sessions, in particular. But over time, she grew more comfortable and became grateful for all that Samaritana had to offer.

“I take the training seriously so that I can realize my dreams,” Josephine told us. “I realize that I have something in me that others can’t do—I have a unique gift.”

That gift is an eye for fashion and jewellery design. And, thanks to those who purchase jewelry from Work of Your Hand in North America, we have partnered with Josephine to see her dreams come true.

Today, Josephine designs a line of jewelry for Samaritana, which we then purchase and sell to provide her with a living wage. The artisan is very passionate about her work.

“Whenever I make jewelry, I imagine the person who will wear it,” she told us. Perhaps you are one of those people that the young woman has seen in her mind’s eye!

Thank you for being one of the reasons for Josephine’s joyful disposition and her hope. Know that you are changing lives, one purchase at a time.