Hai Duong, Vietnam
Partners Since 2018
Among the craft villages of Vietnam, you’ll find artisans who have been mastering their craft for decades. Such is the case with Phong, the leader of the workshop where our stunning mother of pearl pieces are crafted. Phong’s family has been working with shell for three generations in Hai Duong province. Phong was introduced to this craft at 17, and he now has an impressive 30 years of experience.
While there is a long history of handcrafts in this area, today very few families maintain these traditions. Instead, young people find work in factories because other economic opportunities are limited. But at the workshop he and his wife run next to their family home, Phong continues to teach skills and techniques to the younger generation and anyone who wants to learn to work with shell, helping keep this special heritage alive.
Hai Duong, Vietnam
Vietnam is one of the most populous countries in the world and stretches along the coast of the South China Sea. Beginning in 1954, Vietnam was partitioned into two countries and was reunified in 1976. Vietnam places a high value on education and has a literacy rate of 96%. Handcrafts are also highly valued as cultural treasures; over 2700 villages in Vietnam are known as "craft villages" because they have specialized in a particular handcraft for hundreds of years.
Stories of Flourishing
Mr. PhongMr. Phong’s family has been working with shell for three generations in Hai Duong province. Phong was introduced to this craft at 17, and he now has an impressive 30 years of experience.
Ms. NuiNui has been an important part of Phong’s workshop since he began taking over leadership of the business in 2007. Nui was born in a village called Ha Tien, but left her home and traveled to Hai Duong when she learned about the opportunity to work with shell as an Artisan. Phong became her mentor and has taught her everything she knows about the craft, providing her with the skills to build a more prosperous life for herself and her family.
Ms. HuyenHuyen is a loving mother who has built her family life around her work as an Artisan. She began working with mother-of-pearl when she was just 18 years old–and has put her skills to use to improve life for herself, her husband, and their two sons. Huyen is proud to say that her stable job at Phong’s workshop has helped her family have a better life and has made it possible for both her children to attend school.