As the year ends, it’s always a good time to pause and recharge, to strengthen friendships and set new goals for the year ahead. At NOVICA, we decided that happiness will be the light that guides our work and we wanted to share this happiness with the artisans, their families and the team in our Guatemala office.
This year, we decided to have a family Christmas celebration because we believe that a solid and unified family is key to our mission to preserve, empower and connect our artisans with sales opportunities around the world. Our celebration was part of the Happiness Project, that motivates us to unite our team and collaborators.
We were joined by the artisans whose stories we’ve shared with you. Artisans like Victor Hugo Lopez who, despite the adversities he’s faced, has never lost the smile that illuminates his beautiful woodwork. Don Victor arrived with his grandson’s wife and his little great-grandson.
The little boy has inherited his great grandfather’s talent and skillfully colored the stars we gave out to the children who participated in the ornament activity. Some of these stars now hang on the Christmas tree that welcomes people to our NOVICA office in Guatemala. Others were taken home by the children to decorate their own houses. It feels good to know that a part of us will be sharing the holiday in other homes.
Remember Zandra Sajbin, the jewelry artisan who is working toward taking her children to Disney World one day? She and her three children also accompanied us. The two older kids are adolescents now though when we met them, they were toddlers.
Aura Garcia joined us too. She’s the talented artisan who uses fabric and wood to make the worry dolls that help us with our problems. As mentioned in another blog post, this past year has been tough for her, but she continues to work with optimism.
On Saturday morning, December 8, we all felt energized to see so many little hands sparkling with glitter, to see our offices filled with the smiles of children who scampered from one place to another, having fun with the artisans who are NOVICA’S reason for existence.
Without a doubt, the highlight of the party was the arrival of Santa Claus and his wife, who made everyone laugh with their jokes and games. Some of the children won a small prize to take home.
Santa and Mrs. Claus joined us for a delicious meal of Guatemalan chuchitos, a kind of tamales made of steamed corn masa filled with pork and a delicious salsa. We washed it all down with a traditional ponche, a hot, sweet beverage brewed from fresh and dried fruits. If you’re ever in Guatemala, be sure to try these tasty treats. You’ll love them.
Then it was time for photographs of the team and guests so that each family could take home a picture with Santa and his wife. We all felt such satisfaction to be a part of this Christmas party and to have worked another year for our artisans and the shoppers who give them the opportunity to get ahead.
May happiness guide the way for all of us in 2019.