Fura Gems CEO Dev Shetty is delighted to have a crew of women taking an active role at the Coscuez emerald plant in Colombia. (Image: Fura Gems)
COLOMBIA – There is a myth among Colombian emerald miners that if a women entered the mine, the green gems would hide. FURA Gems is challenging that idea at its Coscuez emerald mine.
Columbian women have traditionally been barred from jobs in the mining industry. Fura Gems CEO knew that local women play vital, strong and active roles in local communities. He set out to empower this overlooked group of people by creating an all-female team at the mine.
Women in the region of West Boyaca near the mine had worked successfully to wash tailings and recover any emeralds that were missed in the processing plant. They wanted to take a more active role.
The women completed a safety and mining competencies course. They have also been trained to wash, sort and grade emeralds. Today they work in a temporary facility until a modern plant can be completed early next year. The new plant will need about 30 employees to run it. The women will handle material feeding, picking, loading, recording, security, and pump and equipment management, as well as electrical repairs.
Fura Gems is headquartered in Toronto and maintains a website at www.FuraGems.com.