Rootz Creationz is situated in the Valley of a 1000 Hills just outside Durban in Africa
“If I have ever seen magic, it has been in Africa.”
- John Hemingway
About Rootz Creationz
Rootz Creationz is a handcraft business based in the Valley of a Thousand Hills outside Durban, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. In 2018 we celebrate 23 years of designing and producing African-inspired gifts that combine indigenous handcrafting skills and contemporary designs to produce a range of unique products that reflect the creative spirit of Africa. These gifts are then sold by retailers across the world, sustaining the livelihoods of many talented artisans in the Rootz family. Rootz has a focus on empowering women from disadvantaged backgrounds through providing meaningful income opportunities as well as uplifting the surrounding community.
Rootz works with beaders, wireworkers, painters and weavers to handcraft beautiful and distinctive products.
Most of the products are made from the artisans' homes, and they then meet at the Rootz offices once a week with finished pieces, collecting materials to create products for new orders.
We have built wonderful partnerships with organisations in South Africa and around the world over the years and are always looking to form new, long-lasting and positive relationships with people who share our vision.
Rootz has built up a lot of business experience in working with retailers, promotional companies, corporate gifting, as well as fair-trade distributors in export markets around the world, timeously and to a high quality standard. Working with Rootz means supporting creativity in Africa as well as providing work for people, mostly women, from disadvantaged backgrounds - many of whom are the sole breadwinners of their families.
Rootz Creationz was started in 1995 by Carey Moran after she did research in development studies exposing her to the harmful affects of unemployment, especially for black women, in the post-apartheid democracy of South Africa. She set about to start a business with a goal to create income opportunities and meaningful jobs for women from disadvantaged backgrounds. Using her entrepreneurial talent and creative spark, she decided to create a platform for indigenous handcrafting techniques that, when combined with contemporary designs, would sell in international markets. And so Rootz Creationz was born in the Valley of a 1000 Hills, South Africa.
Since then, the Rootz journey has been a positive but challenging one - the Valley of a 1000 Hills is heavily affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic - it has one of the highest HIV infection rates in the world: over 50% in some areas. The 2008 Recession also took its toll, with Rootz downsizing due to a decrease in overseas demand; but we have since recovered. In 2010 we launched our very own community football team, Rootz United which has gone on to be very successful. T0day we work with a core team of twenty-five: a combination of beadworkers, wireworkers, weavers and painters as well as administrative staff. Rootz is continuing to grow on its vibrant platform with new products and ventures on the near horizon - watch this space!
Rootz United was created during the build up to the 2010 Fifa World Cup. It was an exciting time in South Africa and Rootz got very involved in producing dancing fan puppets that were sold to the many visitors who came for the FIFA World Cup. Brendan Moran had been teaching and coaching football in the Outer West area of KZN for 8 years and he became aware of many young men who had finished or dropped out of school and were demoralised with their future prospects. Rootz decided to create and sponsor a team and Rootz United was born. Brendan coaches a squad of young men from the Valley of a 1000 Hills on a weekly basis and organises games from time to time and Themba Ngcobo is the captain - a remarkable leader who also coaches and trains youngsters near his home in Embo. Resources have always been scarce to fulfill the potential of the 30 young men who are dedicated to playing, enjoy the training, routines and teamwork. They are too old for the junior clubs and cannot afford travel and subscriptions for the senior clubs. Rootz United has given hope and a sense of belonging to these young men who are very grateful for the opportunity to play. Rootz had an Indoor Team made of United players that were the reigning champions for 2013 and 2014 in the Hillcrest League.