Happy Birthday, Mujeres en Cambio!
By Mary Norquist
It’s been 21 years since Mujeres en Cambio began. Come celebrate with friends, old and new, on Thursday, January 21, 2 pm, at the Rancheritas Event Center in Agustin Gonzalez. Only 14 miles from San Miguel de Allende, Agustín González is a small, rural community on the road to Guanajuato.
Rancheritas Luncheon at Agustín González
Mujeres en Cambio
Thu, Jan 21, 2pm
300 pesos, event; 50 pesos, transportation
Available at La Conexion
(Aldama 3 and Café Monet)
and La Tienda/Biblioteca
Event tickets are 300 pesos and, if you need a ride, you can purchase a ticket for transportation for 50 pesos. All tickets are available at La Conexion (Aldama 3 and Café Monet) and at the Tienda at the Biblioteca (Insurgentes 25).
The Rancharitas, also known as the Rug Hookers, were actually the starting point for Mujeres en Cambio. A small group of women in San Miguel wanted to do something for rural women to help them learn a skill and earn money. The project began with a few women from Agustín González being taught embroidery. This soon shifted to rug hooking without the use of a frame. The group today consists of 15 women who have, with the ongoing help of Charlotte Bell, developed their business into a coop, built a store, and most recently an additional space that is perfect for events. They also offer tours from SMA to Agustín González during which people visit various homes, try different foods and drinks, and get to see up close a truly authentic Mexican village.
So, how did the scholarship project start? The Rancheritas were happy to have the opportunity provided them, but they also wanted to know what could be done for their daughters. Thus, the scholarship program was born. The women from San Miguel started raising money by hosting small groups of women for luncheons held at their homes. The first year, five scholarships were awarded.
Today, following basically the same plan, Mujeres en Cambio provides more than 150 scholarships annually to young women in Secondaria, Prepa, and University. These young women come from several rural areas surrounding San Miguel. They are recommended by their teachers and school principals, and as long as they maintain the required grade point average, they are given scholarships.
Mujeres en Cambio hosts nine events every year ranging from more intimate luncheons held at Hacienda de las Flores to larger events like this annual luncheon in Agustín González. At this event, you will experience authentic Mexican food prepared by the Rancheritas. You’ll also have a chance to shop in the Rancheritas Store, where you can purchase “rugs” which are true works of art. All the artwork on the rugs is created by the women who hook them. There are scenes from rural life including animals, people, houses, flowers, birds and so much more. Other crafts from the village will also be on display and for sale.
If you need a ride to this event, purchase a Transportation Ticket along with the Event Ticket. Be at St. Paul’s Church on Cardo no later than 1:30 pm on Jan 21. If you are driving and need a map, email MaryNorquist47@gmail.com.
Mujeres en Cambio is a nonprofit organization that provides scholarships to underserved young women in the rural areas surrounding San Miguel de Allende.