I wanted to tell you all about Kai Krafts, the project I am volunteering for through LeaveURmark organization. Kai comes from the Kannada word “kai” which means hand, and it promotes all handmade work specifically by women mostly in the southern area of India, north Karnataka in the district of Dharwad. Kai Krafts acts as a support for all this women in encouraging them to expose their amazing work and possibly make a living off of it. Kai Krafts seeks to improve their earning potential not only by helping them find work and clients but helping them in improving their skills and getting up to the standards where they can sell them as quality and unique products. Kai Krafts also acts as a designer advisor, making artisans more knowledgeable and aware of the colors and designs that there is a market for and which designs to avoid being that they might take up more time than they could sell it for.
Kai Krafts employees are not payed by the revenue made from the sales of the product, they are salaried by NGOs and the IDF Federation so the money that comes from the sales of the product goes into buying more supplies for the artisans and directly to the artisans pockets. The organization does keep a small percentage of the sales but it is only to cover any additional costs that the artisans or coordinators require to help with the production like travel and transportation. It is important to express that the sole purpose of Kai Krafts is to provide a link for women with customers who appreciate their unique skills and hard work, not to make a business off of the artisans hard work, only to promote and support. The IDF has been a big supporter since Kai Krafts was founded back in 2010 and aims to empower women in a holistic approach of training them and supporting them in achieving a sustainable living.
I volunteered to help with the promotion of the product; not only in making people aware of the amazing product created by this women but also the big difference it makes in their lives to be able to work and support their household. By telling the artisans’ story of how they got into the trade, how they have perfected their skills and how Kai Krafts has helped them in improving their handcrafting skills which has allowed them to sell more product and to be able to sell it for what it is actually worth, hard and meticulous , unique work. Stay tuned for some detailed posts on the weaving and pattern making process as well as videos and interviews with the artisans. I can’t tell you all how excited I am to be a part of this, I hope you guys can make it out to volunteer at some point, I am sure it will a very rewarding experience.