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Meet Patricia Govea

Today we’d like to introduce you to Patricia Govea.

Patricia, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I started in the fashion industry when I was 19 years old, as a fashion design student, I had a boutique in Mexico and was selling European brands. During one of my travels, I attended Paris fashion week, I visited a museum and saw a long line of people waiting to appreciate a piece of art. Surprisingly this enigmatic, and mystical artwork, full of hidden phrases and story to tell, was from my home state of Nayarit, Mexico and it was made by indigenous Wixarika people. This experience in my life awoke a curiosity in me to know more about who my people were, what my culture was and most importantly, the circumstances of how this ethnic group were living.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
In order to help and try to make a change, I began to educate myself about the Wixarika culture in Mexico. I’ve learned that 22% of the population is indigenous, with the majority of them living in the mountains in remote locations. The Indigenous live without access to transportation, lack of opportunities for education, jobs, health services and participation in Mexico’s economy. Frequently they suffer discrimination and segregation from those outside of the area. Reading about the culture fascinated me, but reading about their terrible circumstances, devastated me.

I started thinking, what can I do for this forgotten and invisible community? What immediately came to my mind was a clothing line, with beautiful and exclusive handmade embroidery that promoted their heritage as well. And this has become my dream.

I made a precarious journey up to the mountains, it was the first time that I had visited the indigenous communities. My experience changed my perception of their community completely and brought me profound respect towards their ethnicity and traditions. As I became aware of their community, it motivated me to solve one of their major problems; the lack of job opportunities. When I met the first group of indigenous women, I felt an immense amount of empathy and connection to them. At the moment, I felt that I could do more for the community and at that specific moment, I knew it was my calling.

Please tell us about Patricia Govea Collection.
Patricia Govea Collection is a Socially Responsible Enterprise. Our mission is to provide sustainable and consistent employment that allows the wixarika indigenous community to participate in the creation of economies of scale. We are honored to collaborate with amazing women and help alleviate poverty. Also, our Collection pays fair wages. We presented a plan to the Mexico government which united our efforts to implement training programs, fund female education and support health and well-being programs for the women and their families.

We aim to bring awareness to the people behind our collection, the stories behind the stitch, and how we generate a social impact that benefits their communities. Our company contributes to the achievement of most of the sustainable development goals adopted by the United Nations.

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
It was a vacation with my family that brought me fulfillment, love, certainty and unforgettable moments that will keep in my heart forever.

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