Aj Quen is a private association for development, founded by representatives of organized Mayan artisan groups from various regions of Guatemala. Aj Quen in the Kakchiquel language means "weaving together.” Aj Quen purchases quality raw materials in bulk, and assists artisans by providing marketing, product development, technical and business skills. Besides selling to international fair traders, Aj Quen is building a growing market within Guatemala. Aj Quen’s social development division works in the artisans' communities, providing training in community organizing, health and nutrition, literacy and women's rights. These training activities involve four important aspects: social, economic, cultural and political, in order to benefit member groups through integrated capacity building.
Nearly all the artisans are of Mayan descent, belonging to four ethnic groups: Kaqchiquel, Quiché, Quekchi and Tzutujil. Aj Quen is now reaching out to other groups as well.
Ten Thousand Villages purchases a variety of woven items from Aj Quen. Ten Thousand Villages has purchased products from Aj Quen since 1992.
- Artisan Products