We’re not only honoring the artistic traditions of Nepal through our exhibitions and online resources, but also in the Rubin Shop, where we’re featuring items crafted by Nepalese artisans. As communities in Nepal begin rebuilding after the recent earthquakes, it is more important than ever to support the work of these local craftspeople. Here’s a look at some of the artisan-made Nepalese products in our shop.
Hamro Village: Opportunities for Underprivileged Women in Nepal
Hamro Village works with marginalized artisans, specifically indigenous and underprivileged women in rural Nepal, to provide opportunities for economic empowerment through craftsmanship. They are a human-centered business focusing first and foremost on fair wage practice, dignified working communities, and supporting their artisans with a sustainable income that provides food and education for their children and families.
Aid Through Trade:Kathmandu Valley Artisans
Aid Through Trade™ is a certified Fair Trade Federation member that works with a dozen full-time artisans and staff in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal and about 70 artisans working from their homes in various villages. They ensure sustainable, fair, and living wages in a safe and healthy environment, as well as a work-from-home program that provides income not available to most women in Nepal, retirement funds, daily meals for artisans, and basic well-being benefits that include eye care and yoga. Additionally, they are a Green America Certified Business and are committed to protecting the planet locally and in Nepal.
Wild Earth: Handmade Herbal Products
Wild Earth focuses on the production of authentic Himalayan herbal products made from local traditions that are indigenous to Nepal. Their products are all handmade and hand-packed by underprivileged women from remote communities who are now working in Kathmandu. They are committed to using sustainably harvested plants, following community trade practices, and providing their employees with a dignified and respectful work environment.
From the Road: Ethically Made, Locally Sources Garments
From the Road is an American company that works with indigenous artisans around the globe. Their work in Nepal has yielded a collection of ethically made, locally sourced, and naturally dyed cashmere and linen products. Each item is designed in partnership with the artisans, utilizing traditional techniques and patterns. These sustainable products are crafted in limited editions and the production of each garment is documented through photo and video to be made available on line.
Tibet Carpet: Environmentally Friendly Woven Products
Tibet Carpet produces carpets and pillows woven in the traditional Tibetan style that are crafted by artisans in Nepal. The products are made in an environmentally friendly method with a commitment to the social welfare of their artisans and the local community by providing basic medical services to disadvantaged locals. They contribute a percentage of their profits each year to local and international human rights organizations and recently (May 2015) held a concert benefit for Nepal Earthquake relief, raising $20,000 and contributing an additional $5,000.
Kathmandu Imports: Serving Underprivledged Communities in Nepal
Kathmandu Imports’ mission is to raise awareness and encourage the practice of fair-trade ethics with the various artisan communities that they work with. This This includes supporting local medical and health sectors that treat the underprivileged. Additionally, they are committed to protecting the environment and started the “Keep Clean Program” in Nepal, in which volunteers help clean the regional landscapes that have been neglected over time.
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