Local Nonprofit Empowers Women and Encourages Artisans

by | Jun 2019

Various gifts from Art2Heart, a Christian nonprofit dedicated to empowering artisans and marginalized women.

Photo: Tate Carlson

Do good and feel good—buying gifts made by artisans around the world helps empower marginalized women.

Art2Heart features on-trend, handmade jewelry, home décor and other gift items sourced from craftspeople and businesses around the world who do good. The entire organization is run by volunteers.

We love Art2Heart’s fashion-forward merchandise and their commitment to improving lives. Creative director Julie Rumsey says, “I find it very satisfying to get to use my creative skills and help people around the world.” Rumsey says Art2Heart is an organization with a Christian mission, but they welcome artists from any background.

Robyn Ruark, Art2Heart’s buyer, is scoping out items from the world over that she thinks will be popular locally, says Rumsey. “Robyn looks at Etsy, she goes to craft fairs, all over really. Art2Heart’s policy is that all merchandise must be hand-made.

“We have partners in several countries,” says Rumsey. “Fair Anita is one of our partners. They are in Peru. They make jewelry, and their mission is to help marginalized women. Fair Anita began when an American woman began researching domestic partner violence. She learned from Peruvian women that they thought being able to have a job was the most important thing they needed to be able to leave an abusive partner.”

Mostacillas de Fe (Beads of Faith) is another Art2Heart partner. Their jewelry is made by women from Flores de Villa, Peru. At first, Art2Heart provided the artists with designs, materials and training. “They have since grown to be independent and self-sustaining and able to earn income in safety and with dignity. Art2Heart helped them become a viable business,” says Rumsey.

While Art 2 Heart seeks out artists, some artists come to them. “There’s the ‘wood guy,’” says Rumsey, referring to an artist who makes home décor items from barn wood. “He donates all the proceeds from his work to Mercy Orphanage in India,” says Rumsey.

Purchasing Art2Heart’s products helps worthy causes, but they also help keep their customers looking fashionable. “We look for an aesthetic that local people want ,” says Rumsey.

Look great and do good—what more could we ask for?


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