San Salvador, San Salvador

sanramon profileFor members of this collective their workshop is much more than just a business. Their priority is creating a strong community that will support them in more than just a financial way. They offer an open community space, possibilities for collaboration between different kinds of artisans and a flexible work alternative. All these things allow for open creativity and cooperation between members.

They have frequently also offered classes open to anyone, but especially for the youth in their community so that they may pass on their talents.

sanramon 1There is great variety in the people that make up this collective. There are men and women of all ages. A number of them are studying for their high school diploma or a university degree, as adults, because working with San Ramon has finally enabled them to do so. There are also many younger students who take part when they can. The workshop is flexible enough that they can work when they need to without it interfering with their studies. The workshop also supports many single mothers. Morena Pereza Acosta for example, is a single mother of five who earns all of her income doing embroidery work for San Ramon. She, like most members of the collective, works from home so that she can work when she wants and still be able to take care of her children.

sanramon 3When CIS last visited San Ramon, there was a young man at the workshop who explained that he was just visiting home for a week. He had worked with San Ramon when he lived in San Salvador but has moved to Cuba to study a medical degree. When asked if he and another woman in the workshop were family, they laughed and told us "yes and no". By blood they are not related, but by way of their community, yes they are family.