Nyabigena Soapstone Carvers is a cooperative that formed in 1989 and works to maximize income for its members and eliminate poverty in their communities. Surrounding the city of Kisii in western Kenya are vast deposits of soapstone. The art of carving soapstone began there in the late 20th century and is commonly passed down from parent to child. Meaning "land of soapstone," Nyabigena mines from several quarries known today for both the quality of the stone and the skill of its 150 carvers—despite a lack of sophisticated drilling or hauling equipment, electrical saws, lathes, grinders, or sanders. The artisans achieve their pieces solely by hand with intricate details created from hand-drawn designs, chisels, small picks, and wood tools. Your purchase provides artisans a fair wage and life-changing community programs.




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