The Mogalakwena Craft Art Development Foundation (MCADF), which creates employment opportunities, promotes the traditional arts and crafts and promotes the restoration of craft art skills, was established in 1994. The foundation specialises in the training of multiple skills - embroidery, bead work, candle making, sewing, basket weaving, cement work, basic computer literacy, practical first aid courses, AIDS awareness & care, children's art workshops and basic principles of cultural tourism.
Mogalakwena itself offers unique ways to experience the soul of Africa and consists of the Artist's Retreat (a renovated farm house) which is a refined bush retreat in Africa for creative minds, The Writer's Cottage (a renovated cottage), a Managers House, staff accommodation, a thatched roof Garden Studio, a 40ft container donated by Safmarine, a vegetable garden, a creche and a basic health support centre and a Training; Development Centre. The Mogalakwena Village is situated in the Northern Soutpansberg region of the Limpopo province on the Mogalakwena river, 20 kilometres from the Botswana border and 80 kilometres from the Mapungubwe National Park and World Heritage Site.
MCADF had small and humble beginnings in the old farm house where unemployed people from the neighbouring Lebowa Tribal Trust Land were trained in a variety of craft art skills and their products sold to enable them to earn an income. It started its work with two part-time craft artists and now employs in the region of 26 people on a full-time basis.
After the book, Craft Art in South Africa was published by Struik/New Holland Publishers the foundation had a huge escalation in orders and it was compelled to employ more people. In the years 1999 and 2000 the Foundation leased bigger premises and increased in personnel, employees, and its marketing activities to UK, USA, France, Netherlands, Australia, Canada. And in 2003 they were the Joint winner of the Nedbank/Mail & Guardian Cultural Project of the Year Award.
Directions from Johannesburg/Pretoria
Take the N1 to Polokwane. From Polokwane (Pietersburg) continue to Vivo, Dendron(R521) and 10 km outside Alldays on the Swartwater Road(R572), at the Mogalakwena sign turn left towards Tolwe. Drive for approximately 20km and at the Mogalakwena River Lodge sign carry on for another 500m, cross the Mogalakwena River Bridge and turn left at Mogalakwena Craft Art Village sign and entrance.
It is one and a half hours drive from Polokwane to the Mogalakwena Craft Art Village.
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