A Conversation with JustPotters
JustPotters tells the story behind their community-based approach to crafting their ceramic garden labels.
terrain: Can you tell us a bit about JustWork and the work that you do with them?
JP: JustWork is an economic initiative which has at the core of its mission to build dignity and to give opportunity to its employees. JustWork starts and supports social enterprises that specifically hire people with barriers to employment, those who struggle with physical disability, mental health issues, homelessness, and addiction.
terrain: How did the idea for JustPotters come about?
JP: JustPotters was started five years ago from the JustWork umbrella when the idea of providing employment met some of the needs of potters at an existing pottery studio open to low-income residents. The creativity that was already there became more dignifying when organized into a way that could generate a bit of income. We also love it when responsible consumers meet the need of an alternative way of doing work, and that good stories are passed on from one to another.
terrain: Your ceramic and terracotta plant labels are so simple, and perfect for the garden. Is there a gardener in your group who came up with the idea for them?
JP: Among our community here in East Vancouver we have so many city gardeners. Many have plots in friends' backyards or in community gardens. The garden markers were designed by a friend who saw their functionality, their beauty and simplicity, and the accessibility of the hand-built process from our potters. It gives them great dignity and joy knowing that others like what they are making!
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