Madres Solteras (Single Mothers)

Nestled into the hills that surround Lake Atitlan’s cool waters, you will find a quaint village home to the Single Mothers Co-operative (Asociacion Madres Solteras). The Single Mothers Co-op has 26 members who gather every day to create a better life for their children.

These incredible Tz'utujil Maya women have all been abandoned by the father of their children and work tirelessly day and night to provide food, clothing and security for their families. There is no assistance for single mothers in San Juan and job opportunities are also scarce. That is why the women took fate into their own hands and began weaving together for a better future. Their strength, hard work and perseverance has given them hope, freedom and a loyal support network. The co-op’s talent is inspirational and their work is breathtaking.

They harvest their own cotton and dye their threads with only natural ingredients such as avocado pits and tree roots. They also create their own silk and weave each blanket or throw by hand on a backstrap loom. So much love and patience goes into every one of their designs, as it is a skill that has been passed down from generation to generation. We feel very lucky to work alongside them and contribute to preserving a dying art.

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