The Emerald Company™ donates to ClayHands Foundation
Ron Ringsrud Founder & Board President of ClayHands is a good friend of ours and has been an inspiration to many in the Emerald trade. We are happy to be working with Ron and his team, and want to make sure our clients know that with every purchase from The Emerald Company™ we donate to ClayHands and, through their work, to the emerald mining communities.
Clayhands is a 501(c)3 non-profit teaching self sufficiency through earth building skills in rural Colombia.In 2017 we inaugurated a 33 x 55 foot adobe and bamboo meeting hall for 110 boys in a boys' rehab center in Sasaima, Colombia. The boys, from 9 to 17 years of age, are in a 10-month drug rehabilitation program with Hogares Claret, a therapeutic community founded by Father Gabriel Mejia. That meeting and meditation hall that we built has been used twice a day for the past two years.
Now Clayhands is working and fundraising to purchase two acres in Eastern Boyacá, Colombia where we can have a base to work from. This region is where some of the best emeralds in the world are mined and the choice of this area is in recognition that the majority of our donors are in the gem and jewelry industry. We will build a compound of small cabañas for visiting donors, museum groups and gem adventurers. The land is on Andes Mountain foothills and has a view below of the town of Muzo, the Muzo emerald mine area, Cunas emerald mine, the Minero River and the Fura Tena in the distance;. It is an absolutely stunning view location and soon will be the center for Clayhands activities.
Clayhands was started by gem dealers. Their projects show what can be done when a number of people want to give back to a country and a region that has produced so much beauty, fineness and color for the world to appreciate.
We thank Ron and his team and look forward to seeing progress and prosperity in the emerald mining region of Colombia with the help of ClayHands.
Author of Emeralds: A Passionate Guide
Ringsrud’s book, “Emeralds: A Passionate Guide,” was published in 2009. Former Gems & Gemology Editor-in-Chief Alice Keller, who published Ringsrud’s first article on Colombian emeralds, says of his work: “With his book and subsequent articles – his 1986 G&G piece on Coscuez emeralds is a classic – Ron has established himself as both a fine gemologist and a respected researcher.” Book cover courtesy of Ron Ringsrud. Book cover art by Cristina Lopez of Editorial Maremagnum, Bogotá