Rehab Craft Cambodia
Rehab Craft Cambodia (RCC) is a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization developed to create employment for Cambodians with disabilities. Many Cambodians are disabled due to injuries from land mines left after the war; land mines are still a major problem in the country. RCC recognizes the obstacles these Cambodians face and gives them skills to create a successful and meaningful business. Since people with disabilities have historically had few opportunities for training or employment, RCC does not hire on the basis of education or job experience. Instead, the organization is dedicated to providing training and opportunities for advancement within the company. RCC pays fair wages for skilled work; its artisans earn two and one-half to three times the average factory–production wage.
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VillageWorks Songkhem Collection is a project which was started by the Girls' Brigade of Singapore, a non-profit Christian organization which works to improve the lives of girls and women in Southeast Asia. The Girls' Brigade provides financial, management, and marketing support for the project which benefits over 60 rural artisans in the Baray district of Cambodia, 2 hours from Phnom Penh. The name VillageWorks expresses their focus on handicrafts produced in small villages using indigenous materials, and traditional crafts techniques. The majority of the artisans who work with VillageWorks are women. VillageWorks currently runs 2 training centers, where women from surrounding villages receive training in sewing, embroidery, and weaving. The centers provide employment for the women and help them realize their potential. VillageWorks hopes to expand this model, to be able to reach more rural women. The Songkhem Collection (songkhem means 'hope" in the Khmer language) highlights VillageWorks' products, particularly handwoven silk & cotton scarves, pillow covers, and handbags. Through the purchase of products from VillageWorks, Songkhem Collection you engage in building lives by helping village women break free from poverty.
The Indonesian People's Handicraft Foundation, or APIKRI, is an independent association of artisans founded in 1987. A nongovernment organization, APIKRI helps organize artisans and provides export marketing services, technical assistance, training and other supports. Most of APIKRI's artisans work in and around the city of Yogyakarta and Central Java, areas renowned for craft production. Benefits to artisans include savings programs, design development and access to microcredit loans for production or emergencies. APIKRI is owned by its members, with management accountable to members. It includes programs to build member capacity, promote fair trade and promote environmental conservation. APIKRI views fair trade as an instrument to achieve democracy in economic life.
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Lombok Pottery Center
Lombok Pottery Center is a collection of four cooperatives: a staff cooperative and three village production cooperatives. The management team reports to the cooperative members. Lombok Pottery Center started as the Lombok Craft Project in 1988 working with potters to improve the standard of living for them and for their families. In 2005, the Lombok Pottery Project became a legal business owned by the potters’ cooperatives and a staff cooperative. The ultimate goal of the project is to create a sustainable environment for the potters and the community. The potters of Lombok have come from a community in which living standards are low, and where illiteracy and infant mortality rates are high.
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Mitra Bali Foundation
A non-governmental, non-profit organization, the Mitra Bali Foundation acts as a market and export facilitator for small craft producers. These small producers represent the diverse Balinese culture that attracts tourism to the area, but because they live in more remote areas and work on a small scale, haven't benefited by the economic influx of the tourism industry.
To counter the marginalization of these producers, Mitra Bali works with around 100 producer groups employing over 1,000 men and women to help them in marketing their products and improve their working conditions. In addition to marketing assistance, Mitra Bali also has a Design Center where producers can access resources, work with designers, and get regular training on new trends, technical aspects of production and health and safety, as well as the use of environmentally sustainable resources within the production process. As a fair trade organization, Mitra Bali's work with artisans is based on principles of benefit, equity and respect. Their artisans produce a broad range of crafts, including beautiful ceramics, silver jewelry, musical instruments, windchimes and more.
In many parts of Indonesia, rural families have increasingly had to migrate to find work to support their families. Pekerti, the Indonesian People's Handicraft Foundation Marketing Service, has been working since 1975 to preserve traditional Indonesian handcrafts skills and to promote income-generating projects among the rural, enabling them to remain in their villages with their families.
In 1978 they founded Pekerti Nusantara, a non-profit trading company to help artisans find markets. The income from craft production that Pekerti has generated over its 30 years of experience has become a major source of support for many families. Pekerti also offers support to artisan groups in the areas of cooperative philosophy, new product development, and financial management. They have had programs that provide health care, school scholarships, and loans. They encourage the use of raw materials from sustainably managed sources and provide information and projects on conservation.
Sanctuary Spring Cards
Sanctuary Spring is a line of beautiful, fair trade greeting cards handcrafted by women who have escaped prostitution in the Philippines. These women were originally forced into prostitution by others or because they had no other means of providing for their families. Now, they are participating in restoration services provided by local charities in order to forge a new beginning for their lives. With limited job options in the Philippines, Sanctuary Spring is a critical lifeline that provides safe, dignifying, and empowering work.
© Good Paper
PREDA Fair Trade
The PREDA Foundation is a child advocacy group that since 1974 has been on the fore-front of guaranteeing human rights of vulnerable populations in the Philippines. PREDA runs a variety of programs that focus on protecting women and children who have been abandoned, jailed, live on the streets, or who have been unlawfully trafficked into the sex industry. Through their rescue and recovery programs, hundreds of children who are victims of abuse are helped by PREDA, who offers legal protection, shelter, therapy, and a new life of dignity. The PREDA Fair Trade Project combines social responsibility, fair wages and community development to help traditional handicraft producers and small farmers throughout the Philippines prosper. Sales of their products help to fund PREDA's many projects while also providing interest free loans, community development projects, market access and just earnings to the artisans. Nearly 160 artisans are employed through PREDA's Fair Trade work.
PREDA's products are made from a variety of natural and recycled materials, such as shells, pumice stone, palm leaves, vines and wood.
SAFFY Handicrafts is the marketing arm of SAFRUDI, the Social Action Foundation for Rural and Urban Development, a community development organization that began in 1966. Through their social enterprise program, they help empower marginalized producers and artisans throughout the Philippines. SAFFY began as a workshop that provided alternative livelihoods for youth and women in marginalized areas of Manila through sewing projects, and now assists some 34 small producers groups. They also run their own unit that specializes in making capiz shell items. Artisans who work with SAFFY benefit from product development assistance, access to markets, micro-financing, technical training and special incentives for quality craftsmanship.
In addition, SAFRUDI's social development programs also include health and nutrition programs, sustainable agriculture projects, and community organizing. SAFFY has a lovely line of capiz shell items, as well as a variety of products made from sustainable wood, natural fibers, and recycled materials.
Salay Handmade Products Industries
Salay Handmade Products Industries produces and markets handmade paper that is handcrafted using cogon grass, a weed that interferes with local farming, and other natural fibers. The group was founded in 1987 as a civic organization known as People’s Economic Council (PEC) to create employment for people in the community of Salay, an area with little industry and a history of political unrest. Through experimentation, the group developed its trademark handmade paper. In 1990 the papermakers incorporated separately from PEC as Salay Handmade Paper Industries, Incorporated. Through global marketing, Salay was introduced to the concept of fair trade and began providing development assistance to its artisans. Other benefits to workers include pensions and profit sharing.
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All of Unique Batik's products are handmade by fairly paid artisans. We think happy hands make better products and a better world. Regular orders from Unique Batik create choices and opportunities. Artisans know in advance how much they will earn and can plan for the future. The security of a good job is one of the best ways to ensure that families are healthy, have food on the table and kids are in school.
Thailand is a country rich in beauty and full of skilled artisans, but it can be hard for even the most talented to make a living. Many artisans must take low-wage jobs as manual laborers or farmers. This is especially true for ethnic minorities, refugees and farm workers. We support talented artisans from these groups so their skills can shine. Glimmering iching bracelets, colorful jippy necklaces and festive crinkle skirts are just a few of the ways they pass good fortune from their hands to yours.
Go forth with good karma on your body knowing that an artisan family thanks you.
© Unique Batik
About 10% of the population of Vietnam is comprised of ethnic hill tribe peoples. Living in rural hilly and mountainous areas, the hill tribes have little access to markets. Craft Link, a non-profit organization, works to assist small Vietnamese craft producers find market opportunities and to promote awareness of ethnic minority crafts and culture.
Craft Link also provides marketing, design, and management advice to other disadvantaged groups, like street children and people with disabilities. Craft Link is committed to the principles of fair trade, investing in artisans' social welfare and guaranteeing fair wages, worker safety, and care of the environment.
Working closely with the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology in Hanoi, Craft Link helps preserve traditional craft skills like the weaving and embroidery of the tribal groups, puppet making, and traditional ceramics. Craft Link's ceramics, long-time best sellers with our customers, come from Bat Trang, a small village on the Red River, which has been famous for its ceramics since the 15th century.
Mai Handicrafts was started by two social workers who were concerned about improving the lives of street children and single mothers in Ho Chi Minh City and ethnic minorities in mountain villages. Building on the belief that social development is intricately tied to economic self-reliance, Mai Handicrafts reaches out to artisans in underserved areas providing marketing and training and returning some of the profits from the sales of handcrafts to fund social work projects.
The 300 artisans (80% are women) associated with Mai Handicrafts are earning between US$50 and $70 a month in a country where the average monthly income is US$20-30. Many are able to work from their homes or in small workshops instead of seeking work in Vietnam's factory industries. With an eye for detail, Mai's artisans make pottery, silk scarves & purses, baskets and lacquerware. Their creative use of renewable resources like bamboo, recycled paper, and other natural fibers make their products among our top sellers.