In 1968 five friends, Olga Pardo Santayana de Artagaveytia, Sara Beisso de Souza, Dora Muñoz de Cibils, María del Carmen Bocking and Manila Chaneton de Vivo shared their concern for the hard life and lack of opportunities of rural women back at that time.
They planned on selling the simple objects that the women were already making, wool blankets and horse saddle pads. They sold well and soon they were organizing workshops all around the country.
With the aid of social workers they committed to give the women the necessary tools to organize the production, administrate the cooperatives and deal with suppliers and customers. While providing support in the difficult task of balancing work and family. The founders ´ vision was always that Manos should not only be a work source, but a means of women’s empowerment and development.
Forming leaders that would move the organization forward was a main priority. Manos ´founders were great women that shared a huge work capacity and the conviction that no dream is too big.
Nowadays all of the founders have passed away, but their memory and legacy is still with all of us in Manos.
Our ethical way
Manos del Uruguay is a member of the WFTO, World Fair Trade Organization since 2009.
Fair Trade is a trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency and respect, that seeks greater equity in international trade.
As a Fair Trade organization, we are engaged in supporting producers, raising awareness and in campaigning for changes in the rules and practice of international trade.