More than just a pretty placemat…

Natural Selection
September 03, 2018

We might rattle on a bit about our conservation work, but we’re also passionate about people, and when we see a really great humanitarian initiative we invest in it. This is the case at Shipwreck Lodge on Namibia’s Skeleton Coast, where the humble placemats have quite a story to tell.

Mammadu is a non profit organisation in Namibia that takes in a total of 63 under age children who are living in states of abandonment and deprivation. The centre gives these youngsters a safe place in which to eat, study and play. The centre is situated in Otjomuise, which is in the Khomasdal North District in the farthest outskirts to the west of Windhoek.

Among the projects that the organisation runs alongside their care of these vulnerable children, are the Mammadu Centre Handmade Products, and it’s from this project that our rather lovely placemats were sourced.

The activity was originally intended for the mothers or women in the children’s families, but that has been extended to include their friends and neighbours as well. The women create a range of attractive pieces, including bags, baskets and placemats. Old plastic is utilised to create each of the pieces, thus helping to keep the neighbourhood clean as well. Tutoring for the women takes place once a week, and both the women and the centre benefit from the proceeds of the sales.

So think of those talented women in Windhoek and the youngsters safe at the centre, as you sit down to eat at Shipwreck Lodge – we promise it’ll make your food taste even better!


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