“Every time a Kayoong basket sells, an angel gets its wings.” No, that’s not quite right. So what does happen?
Well, first of all the artisan has already received good pay for good work. The women making Kayoong baskets are paid upon completion, not a commission based on sales. This allows them to earn regular, reliable income without them taking the risks of the seasonal markets.
So when a basket or rug sells, a portion of the funds go back into buying more materials. (Literally! Each rug takes 20 meters of fabric and even a medium basket takes 3 meters.) Another portion goes into the necessary expenses and taxes of running such a business. The remainder goes into the Kayoong Community fund to pay school fees, medical expenses and emergency needs of its orphans, widows and their children. This same fund is used for making no-interest microloans for widows.
An angel may not get its wings when a Kayoong item sells, but it sure does make for many happy people. Buyer included!