Dorly Piske, who is part of the Partners of the Americas in Wyoming, has been steadily working for the past few years to raise funds to subsidize women’s healthcare in Brazil. Dorly has been making jewelry from açai seeds and other natural beads in order to fund a mobile mammagram program in Goias, Brazil. Traveling around the U.S.A., with pounds of beads, scissors, wire and string, Dorly, who is originally from Santa Catarina, Brazil, organizes jewelry making workshops and gives talks about the lack of sufficient and early diagnosis of breast cancer in rural areas of Goias.
Jewelry students of all ages learn about the mammagram machine that will be purchased and the doctors in training who will ride a bus with it to give screenings to women in rural Goias. They also learn how to string beads on cords and wires in order to make original necklaces, bracelets and earrings. These items are then “sold” and the proceeds donated to Partners of the Americas for the breast cancer project. Here is a bracelet that I made in a workshop in March at Villanova University near Philadelphia:
The workshop was sponsored by the Department of Cultural Studies and the Falvey Library. Dr. Karyn Hollis stated in her introduction about jewelry and culture: “Jewelry is what makes us human.”
After her visit to Villanova, Dorly headed to Washington DC to discuss future fundraising plans. Then she returned to the West in order to meet up with Patricia Moura, a designer from Brazil, who was going to instruct some of the workshops!
To find out more about “Bio-Jóias” or Bio-Jewelry for Breast Cancer, to schedule a workshop, or make a donation to this very worthy project, please visit on