I really enjoyed this visit. The bead factory was begun in 1975 to provide work for single moms. I spoke with a woman who has worked there 30 years. They work 5 and 1/2 days per week get a fair wage and health insurance. They all get trained at the different stations, making beads, painting beads, firing beads, putting together jewelry, the gift shop so they don't get too bored. I kind of felt bad for the women because they are on display with all these strangers wandering through taking their pictures but I guess it helps pay the bills. It seems like a really awesome program that employs lots of women (and some men). Definitely worth the trip. I also bought some awesome jewelry at really reasonable prices.
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