ASSOCIATION OF ARTISANS, ADISA
Constituted in 2014, the 16 members that comprise this organization suffer physical and/or mental limitations, as a result of the lack of attention and timely treatment of diseases that cause physical paralysis. These deficiencies were suffered in the most vulnerable stages of their lives, and additionally, there were no specialized institutions to treat such diseases.
Despite their conditions, they are directly responsible for production (artisanal products manufactured from recycled materials) and the administration of the association itself. The productive activity they develop consists of giving life to the magazines and newsprint which, for some, has already fulfilled its function, but which they recycle to produce articles of jewelry such as earrings, necklaces, and bracelets, as well as other products such as containers, glasses and more. If we had to choose a material that they use a lot, it would be craft paper, with which they make packing bags.
ADISA originated on account of the need to provide an opportunity, a place, an environment, and a hope for people who, because of their condition, are rejected by such an exclusionary society, where some are even marginalized by their own families. An example of this is Antonio, a wonderful person full of life and ideas who spent 30 years of his life locked up by his family’s decision, because of social prejudices. Nowadays, Antonio goes to the association’s headquarters every day in his wheelchair to make jewelry products with recycled paper and, when necessary, he also takes care of the visitors of the store. In addition to his ordinary work day, on Tuesdays and Thursdays, he goes to the Santiago Atitlán Park to dedicate himself to street vending in his own wheelchair.
“Joining forces helps us grow as people
and that is what happened to us with ADISA”
Needless to say, this association of artisans is the light in the lives of these people, since the work done generates their own income and contributes a lot to their support. However, in order to maintain a good dynamic in production, ADISA has the need to market its products and therefore has a shop installed in its own headquarters, located in Barrio Tzanchicha, and another on the Santiago Atitlán pier. In addition, they also display their products in a store located in Panajachel, managed in partnership with other organizations. The association has not integrated new partners because this would imply having to generate greater job opportunities for the new members and, consequently, to obtain a larger volume of monthly sales.
Valuing the effort and proving the entrepreneurial spirit in them all, the Foundation has closely followed its work with the relationship of the young leaders of FUNDAP. Joining forces helps us grow as people and that is what happened to us with ADISA, an exceptional case of perseverance, values, work, and tolerance; another example of how helping each other can bring change and strive for development with the dignity that we so long to achieve.