The two businesses that Lav Kokonas has supported by kick starting a small micro enterprise are going great guns. Pango Pieces are based just on the outskirts of Port Vila, the capital of Vanuatu and Cheryl @ Champagne is based at one of the world’s top ten beaches – Champagne Beach, Santo, in northern Vanuatu.
Both enterprises, are creating a variety of jewellery, but all is inspired by the beautiful archipelago of Vanuatu.
One of the inspirations is World War 2.
During World War 2 the USA Defence Forces used Vanuatu as a base, as a result many pieces of WW2 history remain dotted around the archipelago of Vanuatu. At the end of WW2, the American military disposed of millions of dollars worth of material in the waters around Vanuatu. The governing countries at the time, France and the United Kingdom could not agree on payment for the goods, so the Americans simply dumped large amounts of jeeps, six-wheel drive trucks, bulldozers, semi-trailers, fork lifts, tractors, bound sheets of corrugated iron, unopened boxes of clothing, and cases of Coca-Cola into the sea
I had visited Million Dollar Point on several occasions and found glass on the beach there and at other sites around Vanuatu and had pondered what could be done with these fascinating pieces of history. And so this micro enterprise idea was born. These individually hand crafted pieces of jewellery are inspired by sea tumbled glass, debris from the sea after all these years.
What a great idea – a snippet of history to treasure. Copper and silver wire is used to embrace the glass that has been tumbled by the waves since the end of World War 2. The designs are made by Cheryl and Johnas, Mary and Jack and are handcrafted into unique and individual pieces.
Help support micro enterprise in Vanuatu – giving rural women a hand-up
Lav Kokonas is delighted to be able to have a small selection for sale of the World War 2 sea tumbled pieces available to purchase in New Zealand. If you would like to make a purchase, contact me directly at [email protected] and I will send you photos of the necklaces that are still available. Ranging in price from $20 to $25.
OR – here’s a great idea – visit Cheryl @ Champagne Beach or Mary at Pango Village and meet the artists yourself.