Entertainment

Maple Ridge artist creates ‘Gems To Heal’

Earrings and bracelets in the Gems To Heal collections, created by Sue Powers and Maria Hernandez-Castro. - Contributed
Earrings and bracelets in the Gems To Heal collections, created by Sue Powers and Maria Hernandez-Castro.
— image credit: Contributed

As Maria Hernandez-Castro watched the devastation a typhoon caused in the Philippines, she felt overwhelmed but spurred into action.

“I was really shaken,” said the stay-at-home mom who has been creating beautiful handcrafted jewelry for the past three years.

Typhoon Haiyan blew through a large swat of the central Philippines at the beginning of November, killing more than 6,000 people.

According to the United Nations, more than 3.5 million people have been left homeless by the storm, perhaps the most powerful ever to strike land, and nearly 14 million people have been affected in some way.

“The rehabilitation and rebuilding of our nation will take years, and I feel that we need to do something to support our nation- however big or small,” said Hernandez-Castro, originally from the Philippines.

Hernandez-Castro and other jewelry makers are now selling their art in an effort to fundraise for Doctors Without Borders and other charities helping in the Philippines.

• The Gems To Heal will also be selling jewelry at Last Chance Christmas Craft Fair on Dec. 22 at the Croatian Cultural Centre located 3250 Commercial Drive from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. You can also purchase pieces online at neonamber.com.

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