Zinhle started Mysbasketshop in September 2020 with the goal of helping the elderly women in her rural community who had lost trading opportunities due to lockdown.
She started by taking images of their baskets to showcase onsocial media, giving local artisans an online audience.
The women she supports are master weavers. Skilled artisans who are also grandmothers, mothers, wives and friends, who all work together to support themselves, and each other.
The women weave the baskets using (ilala) palm trees they harvest themselves. Living in rural areas, often with no electricity, this craft is passed down through generations.
Over time Mybasketshop grew and Zinhle progressed to buying the baskets and then personally addingleather detailing to create interesting designs. She sells the finished product at markets and a small store at the Watershed.
In April, disaster struck. The KZN floods destroyed her stock, which was planned for a market. Sadly, the water damage meant the baskets had to be burnt. This left Zinhle without stock reserves and without cashflow to keep buying from her local makers who rely on this money to support themselves.
WHY WE CHOSE ZINHLE:
Her passion, creativity and socially-responsible business ethic is inspiring. To have grown something from grass roots level that empowers up to 15 other women is exactly why we need to #EmpowHER this team of entrepreneurially-spirited and skilled artisans.
WHAT THE #EmpowHER DONATION WILL BE USED FOR:
The capital donation to purchase more stock from the weavers, as wellas to support expansion by hiring someone to help her with the leather application and better storage to protect her valuable stock.