Our embroiderer's name is Tseesuren and she is the mother of our close counterpart and friend Enkhnaran. Every step in making our actual merit badges is made by her including combing, pressing and cutting the Mongolian felt, stitching the badge's border and design, and cutting and pressing the badge's leather backing. She has been making handcrafts for over 30 years and says she really enjoys sharing her work with her family, friends and now Peace Corps Volunteers too!
Working so closely with Tseesuren and Enkhnaran, we are in the unique position of being able to see the real-life change that a project like this can make in small communities and families, person by person. Thanks for being part of this project with us.
Tseesuren sets her own price for the merit badges, which she says can take her and her friends between one and two hours to make each.
According to our friend and translator Nyambayar, who works at a local business development NGO, Tseesuren is "one of our oldest and best clients" in Sukhbaatar Province. We look forward to sustaining a great friendship with her and her community for a very long time. In her hand she is holding our very first merit badge, the Margaash badge...