Many of our Artisan Partners in India have been marginalized because of their gender or social caste. Unfortunately upward mobility from a social or financial standing is very difficult. Through life-changing work as artisans, women have the rare opportunity to advance socially and economically. Women are able to contribute to their community and send their children to school rather than to beg on the streets.
We also partner with survivors of gender violence and trafficking who heal through community, dignified work, and the cathartic practice of working with metals to make elegant jewelry.
Harshali’s parents died when she was young, leaving her and her three siblings to live with their grandmother. In the hopes of finding work, the family moved to Mumbai, joining the millions of people who comprise the migrant workforce. Harshali was able to earn a modest income selling fish on the roadside with her grandmother and sister, but it wasn’t enough.
One day, she found a women’s cooperative and joined the program. Working as an artisan, Harshali now earns a fair wage. With her income, this resilient young woman sends her younger siblings to school and has begun college courses on economics.