When Kristen Welch, MHG Founder, visited her friend Sancha for chai tea, Sancha commented on the polymer earrings Kristen was wearing. Kristen and her daughters had been experimenting with clay. She took off an earring and placed it into Sancha’s hand. Sancha turned it over in her palm, studying it closely, and said, “I would like to learn to make these.” Her curiosity, eye for detail and determination helped Sancha quickly surpass her teacher, and today, she is a skilled polymer artist.
Sancha is from the war-torn country of Bhutan, and her family was sent to a refugee camp in Nepal about 20 years ago for refuge. She came to the United States with her husband from the refugee camp in 2012 and lives in a refugee community in Houston. In 2014, Mercy House Global began providing work for refugees in Houston and developed a one-on-one relationship with Sancha. She uses the money she earns to provide for her family. Her dream is to own a home one day. Recently, Sancha took the steps to become a US citizen.
ARTISAN DETAILS: Starfish Project
Starfish Project empowers survivors of human trafficking and exploitation, to experience freedom, establish independence and develop careers by creating beautiful, high-quality, on-trend jewelry.
"When you purchase a survivor-made product, you partner with us to visit brothels in Asia and invite women to begin a new life as jewelry-makers, accountants, photographers, leaders, and entrepreneurs."
Starfish Project has employed over 160 women and serves thousands more through their Community Outreach Services.