Paul Spurgeon calls for industry help to teach jewellery in Africa.
Paul Spurgeon has launched the Sponsor a Goldsmith initiative through his Cornerstone project, calling on the industry to support him in teaching jewellery-making skills in Africa.
The Sponsor a Goldsmith initiative is the brainchild of Spurgeon, who says it is time to give back to those African countries and communities that have provide resources for the jewellery industry for so long.
He will fly out to Africa on August 4th to begin his work, visiting the Destiny Africa Children’s Choir in Uganda where he hopes to introduce jewellery design to young people to help them forge a future career. He is calling on the industry to support the Sponsor a Goldsmith project by offering tools, equipment or monetary donations to help him fund the trip and teaching.
The initiative has already won support from Beaverbrooks, which is the first company to sponsor Paul Spurgeon in his Sponsor a Goldsmith quest. The jewellery retailer, which is celebrating its 95th birthday this year, has made it a mission to sponsor hundreds of charities across the UK, with Sponsor a Goldsmith becoming one of its beneficiaries.
Professional Jeweller will also provide support for the project, with news updates from Spurgeon detailing the help the industry has given to empower the project.
Spurgeon said of working with Beaverbrooks: “It is with great pleasure and encouragement of this excellent project that we can announce that Beaverbrooks the Jewellers have agreed to be a major sponsor of Sponsor a Goldsmith.
“We hope that many will follow their example in assisting us in our cause of empowering the disadvantaged in South Africa and beyond. In my own life, in my own small way I am trying to give back to a continent that has given us so much. Belief in action.”
The money raised will be used for tools, equipment, materials and associated costs connected to the project. Spurgeon’s personal commitment is to spend between three and six months a year supporting the Cornerstone project for the next five years.
Mark Adlestone, chairman of Beaverbrooks the Jewellers said: “We are really pleased to be able to support the Sponsor a Goldsmith programme. A big part of our ethos is to make a difference by supporting local communities and charities across the UK and beyond, and this is a great example of a project we are proud to be involved with. We really encourage others to get involved and help this wonderful project get off the ground.”
The Sponsor a Goldsmith project is an opportunity for people within the UK jewellery industry and beyond to support a mission to empower disadvantaged and marginalised people of all persuasions, primarily from the African continent. It is part of the wider Cornerstone project created by Paul and Soweto-born jeweller Nqobile Nkosi, which has trained and employed individuals in jewellery-making skills, creating jewellery collections that are sold through Beaverbrooks.
Spurgeon told Professional Jeweller that he hopes to eventually bring a number of individuals to the UK to study with jewellery manufacturers and organisations to learn essential skills and techniques to then be passed on to others, along with the creation of special collections.
He added: "It is not about raising hundreds of thousands of pounds, it is about spreading the skills we’ve got to others to help them grow. If an individual from the industry can donate £5 a week, then the amount our trade can do as a whole to help others overseas is huge."
To donate towards the Sponsor a Goldsmiths initiative please contact Paul Spurgeon via firstname.lastname@example.org or to make a monetary donation please visit PayPal.com and enter the Cornerstone email address above.