Alum Rebekah Peterkin | Lwanga Designs

Rebekah Peterkin

Rebekah's Ugandan roots inspire her to share the artistry of her homeland with her business, Lwanga Design.  Lwanga boasts a unique array of African home décor, kitchen accents, jewelry, and bags, made by village craftswomen in Uganda.  Rebekah is also a talented artisan: she creates consignment, high-quality pieces to complement the work of her partners in Africa.  

Rebekah's dedication to social responsibility is inherent in her business practices. She views her business as a way to help improve the lives of women in Uganda.  Many of the women who produce her crafts are HIV positive and depend on a market for their goods to purchase anti-viral medication for themselves and their children.  Rebekah's work is addressing the need for a systemized distribution for their products, as environmental and social factors (such as bad weather or violence) often prevent products from making their way to the metropolitan markets.

AnewAmerica's program appealed to Rebekah because it spoke to her needs as an immigrant: "When you come from another country, you have to start from scratch.  It's easier to work alongside entrepreneurs from other countries because we have different needs.  When I see [fellow entrepreneurs] working with their own businesses, I feel a sense of enthusiasm and reinforcement of my own goals.  AnewAmerica offers so many connections in the areas of community development, social responsibility, financial literacy and homeownership that apply to people from all different social statuses."

Rebekah is just one entrepreneur who has benefited from AnewAmerica's comprehensive microenterprise development services.  Thanks to the help of AnewAmerica, her African-inspired products were on thier way to reaching a global marketplace and enabled her to work toward the economic security of her family.