Little Travellers an income generation project of the Hillcrest AIDS Centre Trust
  • Buselaphi

    Beading has made a positive impact on Buselaphi's life. It has made her the sole breadwinner of her household, and has enabled her to pay for electricity, and to purchase a stove, a fridge and a television. On average, Buselaphi earns R600 a week from making Little Travellers.

  • Ester Sibisi

    Ester Sibisi is a 58 year old mother of four, who also cares for her grandchildren, providing them with food and clothing. Ester first came to the Hillcrest AIDS Centre Trust to get information and tips on growing crops and flowers. At the time Ester had no income but knew how to bead. She wanted to join the Woza Moya beading project and before long she was making Little Travellers. Ester is always trying to grow as a beader and enjoys sharing knowledge and receiving lessons from other crafters. Ester is a very spiritual person and she draws strength from her beading and knows that her work is making a positive difference! Seeing a Little Traveller brings a smile to her face, "I know I can accomplish anything in my house by making them", she explains.

  • Gogo Francisca

    "Before, I hadn't got even shoes. Nothing before. I was too frightened to go outside. I was afraid people were going to laugh. I had nothing. Nothing to eat, no clothes. They mean that God helps me. God helps me to do these dollies. He looks after me."

  • Joyce Mthethwa

    Joyce Mthethwa is 53 years old. Her family includes her husband, two sons, two grandsons, two granddaughters, and her cousin. Joyce has been beading for three years, which is also how long she has been making Little Travellers. Each doll takes her less than one hour to make. For Joyce, making Little Travellers is a joy, and because of it, she has a lot more money in the bank at the end of the month.

  • Ntombi Dlamini

    "I often lay them on my sofa and admire them for a while. I look at them and wish they could talk, breath, and walk. That is how much I love them. Beading makes such a big difference in my life, I love it, I make life out of it ... my entire house has come from the Little Travellers, my fridge, my sofa, the plaster on my walls, EVERYTHING!, when I make Travellers I see a person a friend and this is why I make them beautiful because I am making a person"

  • Thandiwe Chamane

    "They may be small, but they have made a big difference to me and my family. I was dying when I started making them, and I had nothing to live for. I now have a house , my children are going to school and I have a reason to live."

Traveller Characters

Regular Little Traveller

Regular Little Travellers

Made by 160 women, these little people put food on the table, as unique as the crafter that makes them.
Wedding Traveller

Wedding Traveller

Wedding Travellers are a symbol of love and commitment to one partner
Ballerina Girl

Ballerina Girl

“Tholakele” which means “to receive” – they symbolize the girl who will go on to become a woman, a mother, a gogo.
Warrior

Warrior

Thandi designer this traveller; she said they have very strong hearts and would give strength when times are hard.
Sangoma/Healer Traveller

Sangoma/Healer Traveller

“Traditional Healer” – they promote healing and well-being. Joyce, a traditional healer, made the first ones.
Makoti – Married Woman Traveller

Makoti – Married Woman Traveller

The Makoti symbolizes the transision from maiden to woman and the respect that it brings in Zulu culture.
Soccer Traveller

Soccer Traveller

  “Shabalala” which means “to disappear”, they celebrate the game and the soccer heroes that inspire us
Mother and Child Traveller

Mother and Child Traveller

“Thandi” means love. Thandi designed this Traveller; it was her symbol for herself, being a mother is about unconditional love and sacrifice.
Rasta Traveller

Rasta Traveller

  “Lucky” was designed by Joyce as a tribute to a great South African Rasta legend, Lucky Dube. Lucky celebrates music and peace. Long may the legend continue.
Rugby Player

Rugby Player

Designed by Ester and her daughter , they come in all the official team colours and carry our South African rugby spirit.