Artisan Coop

torogoz1.jpgEl Torogoz is the story of a merger SEW-style—no banks or lawyers or software issues. Just SEW business women planning what would work.

Three creative women’s groups combined to form El Torogoz Artisan Business. The women make aromatic candles, dried flowers, soap, and shampoos and disinfectants. The women worked out of their homes for years.

Needing a workplace, SEW raised funds for a two room structure. It serves as a work space, storage, and meeting room.

The building has become the unofficial women’s center. The women of El Torogoz are very proud to be able to host meetings there addressing various community issues.

Having markets is key to every business. El Torogoz made a contact with a local guest house that appreciated their aromatic candles. Making them in glass containers has the added benefit of recycling: after the candles are used, the containers are picked up and refilled for the next sale. A women’s center in the neighboring municipality is another consistent market.

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Each member of El Torogoz has a favorite design: stars, cylinders, ovals, "eggs" in a basket.

The torogoz is the beautiful national bird of El Salvador and is abundant in this area. The birds nest in a hill just outside their building. What an appropriate name for the group.

Like so many towns, villages and cantons in El Salvador, Palo Grande, home to El Torogoz, has a memorial where those from the area who were killed or disappeared during the civil war are remembered. Family members visit often; annually, there is a commemorative event for the town.