Jeremiah Makaza is the founder of Tonga Textiles. He holds the unsung success story of a humble housekeeper who turned his innate artistic talent into a community-supporting enterprise. Jeremiah did not receive any formal training in art or even the batik process, and yet he has refined the sacred Zimbabwean batik technique into a craft that can be distributed on the global marketplace. Jeremiah is a specialised tailor and this has given his work an exceptional finish to every product. Under his visionary leadership, he has grown Tonga Textiles to a team of 89 artisans at maximum production. More than being a great entreprenuer, Jeremiah is also a trusted liasor for buyers looking to source other Zimbabweans crafts from Zimbabwe. As the leading artist in his trade in Zimbabwe, Jeremiah has trained many upcoming textile artists who have grown to own their own businesses too. At Tonga Textiles, Jeremiah can be found doing unique tasks such as mixing paints to match colour swatches, collaborating with the artists on new designs or even ironing an order as a final quality control step before it is shipped out!
Empowering our Zimbabwean people through sustainable opportunities is what motivates me the most.
Patricia Makaza is the other half of this husband & wife founded family business. She encouraged Jeremiah to start creating textiles after recognizing his talent as a tailor. She saw an opportunity for him to use his tailoring skills to create functional products for the tourism industry. In the early days, she would travel with the textiles to markets with his work and sell. Gifted with great relationship building skills, Patricia quickly built relationships with buyers in neighbouring countries. Today, she can be seen attending international tradeshows in countries such as Italy and Tanzania. At Tonga Textiles, you will find her overseeing administrative business activities and even counselling the younger women. After all, she is the mother of the community, whose nurturing nature has been a source of empowerment and strength to our upcoming women artisans.
Showcasing the beauty of our country through our work is what motivates me the most
Linda Adimora is Jeremiah and Patricia's daughter who grew up with the artisans. There is the common saying that ,"It takes a village to raise a child," and in Linda's life, that village is made up of the artisans. She is passionate about improving her home community after many experiences abroad. She supports the Tonga Textiles team through her marketing and customer service expertise. Being the difference she wants to see in her community is what motivates Linda to support Tonga Textiles through the dynamic work conditions in Zimbabwe, chartering new ways to share the family story with the rest of the world!
Impacting lives and seeing the transformation from poverty to success is what motivates me the most