Women Miners of Sapphires Workshop

4 Oct 2016

In August, Lynda Lawson, Renzo Junior, Tanteliniony Harisoa Eulalie from the SMI-Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining presented at the Queensland College of Arts, Griffith University.

The seminar was attended by graduates as well as 2nd and 3rd year Griffith University students and focused on women miners of sapphires in Madagascar and certification for ethical sources of gemstones. Charles Lawson of Lawson Gems International led a session on sourcing ethical stones.  The workshop ended with students brainstorming ideas on uses for some very small sapphires bought from women in Madagascar.

This was followed up by 6 days of training for peasant miners in Madagascar conducted by Lynda and Charles in a project funded by the German Government. The project taught basic gemmology to these miners with a special emphasis on developing the capacity of women miners to have a better idea of the value of the stones they find and eventually to improve the market prospects for such women. A report on this training was presented to over 100 women leaders at the National Council of Women in Madagascar on the 9th of September.