The Pulsera Project is a nonprofit organization that educates, empowers, and connects Nicaraguan artists with students in more than 1,300 U.S. schools through the sale of colorful handwoven bracelets, or "pulseras" in Spanish.
We brighten U.S. schools with art, film, and compelling cultural education while engaging students in international service that is effective, enriching, and fun.
Please explore our site to discover why student leaders and teachers have spread the Pulsera Project from a single Pennsylvania classroom to over 1,300 schools in all 50 states, coloring hallways and classrooms with beautiful Nicaraguan art and awareness of social justice issues.
The Pulsera Project began in 2009 when a group of friends traveling in Nicaragua discovered a community of pulsera-makers in the foothills of Managua. The artists were masters of weaving pulseras (bracelets) but had little market for their artwork in Nicaragua. Some of the friends returned home and enlisted students at two U.S. schools to sell the youths’ pulseras.
We now work with nearly 100 Nicaraguan and Guatemalan artists and have partnered with students in more than 1,300 U.S. schools, weaving the art of the pulsera into a positive and colorful force across the U.S. and Nicaragua. Since 2009, an incredible 400,000 pulseras have been sold across the country!
For many pulsera artists, weaving pulseras began as art therapy in shelters where they grew up. For others, the native art was passed down from previous generations. For all, pulsera weaving remains central to the stories of their lives –stories that they gladly share through Pulsera Project films and writings - stories that enrich our understanding of the world.
Each pulsera takes about an hour to make, comes tagged with the picture and signature of the artist, and is woven with the rich personal history of the person who made it. When you wear a pulsera, you not only share the voice of a Nicaraguan artist, but you also raise your own voice too, speaking out for opportunity, unity, and a more equal and colorful world.
The Pulsera Project empowers young North Americans and Nicaraguans to partner in creating a brighter future.
U.S. students bring enormous educational and economic advantages to the global exchange, and many students gladly share these advantages to help lift up Nicaraguans who live in the second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.
However, the global exchange is rich with ideas and values that have little to do with economics, yet everything to do with the quality of our lives.
In meaningful cultural exchange, we seek to discover the best of our partners, educate ourselves about their lives and values, and hopefully enrich each other's lives with the best of who we are.
We believe that we have much to learn from those with fewer financial resources than ourselves, especially how to live a simple and fulfilling life where human relationships and respect for the environment take precedent.
The Pulsera Project’s unique partnership between Nicaraguan artists and U.S. students enriches many lives in the U.S. and Nicaragua. Project volunteers have raised more than $2,000,000 to create sustainable jobs, empower Nicaraguan communities, and provide engaging educational programs both in the U.S. and in Nicaragua.
Our projects bridge cultures, bring people together, and color the world with beauty and awareness. Here are just a few of the many projects supported and funded by U.S. students and Nicaraguan artists.
* Sustainable, fair trade jobs for nearly 100
artists in Nicaragua and Guatemala
* 30 member artisan Co-op
* Housing program for pulsera artists
* University Scholarships
* Support for "La Esperanza Granada," an
organization that educates youth in
economically poor areas of Nicaragua
* Computers and computer training
* Support for the “Si a la Vida" youth shelters
* Community development programs
* Support for the "Solar Women of
Totogalpa, an envionrmental co-op.
* U.S. student volunteer trips
* Educational Films
* Innovative Spanish language curriculum
* Support "La Hermandad" coffee cooperative
Please take some time to check out our projects page for more info on who benefits from pulsera sales at schools in the U.S.