By: Nirukshi de Lanerolle
When I was teaching one of the participants in the shelter how to make a Chathu necklace I remembered how the Chathu malaya was created. We had a participant in the Panadura shelter who was very quiet. At the beginning it was so difficult to get her to make jewelry, as she was very shy; however, with a lot of love, care, and patience we taught her how to make jewelry. As time went by she made lots of jewelry and used to enjoy doing it.
After she completed Stage 1 (i.e., when you make 3 necklaces and 3 bracelets the girls are given a stage 1 certificate) and eventually came to Stage 3 (when you have to create your own piece), that is when Chamila had to make her own creation. In the Beads-to-Business booklet, Stage 3 is when you learn how to run your own jewelry business, so Chamila created her own design and named it Chathu; thusly, that is how the Chathu malaya necklace was born.
Now this necklace is made by so many participants, it gives me great joy that Emerge helped Chamila make this creation and that, as a result, this necklace is worn by many ladies around the world.