Truly I had never imagined it to be a country of such incredible diversity. Humid tropics to the east, mountainous areas that almost rival the Alps, stunning coastal regions, rolling hills covered in vineyards....but the people, their smiles and easygoing nature are what I remember the most...and sadly, the incredible poverty of the cities. Most people just want to have the opportunity to work.
Hout Bay is a small fishing village south of Cape Town. Jill Heyes, a transplanted Brit, witnessed the poverty and sense of hopelessness in the surrounding area. Understanding the people's desire to work, she along with the help of a local decoupage artist Christine Sadler, were able to turn used tea bags into works of art. Now Jill, known as the t-bag lady, runs a company employing local women and men all involved in a labor of love.
"An environment that has thrived on determination, co-operation, give and take, support and friendship, has created in reality confidence, pride, responsibility and perseverance where it previously didn’t exist. Lives have been picked up and nurtured, each one an asset and contribution to the success of T-Bag Designs today. As each tea – leaf is crucial to a perfect brew, so each individual at Original T-Bag Deisigns is indispensable to a business that has become a family."
Time didn't allow me and my family to actually tour their workshop, but I purchased many of their products as gifts to bring back to the States.
They make the most unique Christmas ornaments as well as wall plaques, note cards, etc.
If you are interested in purchasing any of their items, and helping this community, check out their website: