The Story of Aayenda
Aayenda Jewelry is a fair-trade fashion jewelry brand with a mission to create work for thousands artisans in Afghanistan, especially women.
Meaning “future” in the Afghan language of Dari, Aayenda was launched as a social enterprise by the not-for-profit Future Brilliance. Collections are a collaboration between award-winning international designers and 36 Afghan artisans who received six months of skills' enhancement training in jewelry design, manufacturing and business.
Our mission is to build markets, improve working conditions and provide full time work for 3000 artisans by 2020.
First developed with the artisans and designers during their training program in Jaipur, the jewelry is now manufactured in Kabul by members of the Aayenda Jewelry Co-Operative. The brand is already carried by 25 leading retail outlets, such as Nina@FredSegal in LA and is selling successfully at trunk shows with style leaders such as Donna Karan's Urban Zen.
So far, orders have provided work for 1200 artisans, including 300 war widows, who hand carve fine lapis and turquoise beads. Royalties generated by sales of Aayenda Jewelry to date have funded the completion of a woman-owned workshop for bead-makers and gem-faceters in Balkh Province.