Achieving equality via fabric, is a novel way fashioned by Sadhna, a Women’s Handicraft Enterprise, registered under the Mutual Benefit Trust Act. Since 1988, the organisation has aimed to provide an alternative means of livelihood to women of rural, tribal and urban slum areas of southern Rajasthan. It encompasses a larger family of over 700 women artisans who own the organisation and control the profits. 

Mainly concentrated in Udaipur, it empowers women by training them to be artisans under valuable skills which they can bank upon. It was initially set up by Seva Mandir- a leading social voluntary organisation in Udaipur- and eventually registered as an independent mutual benefit trust. 

It achieves attention from the likes of the worlds premium travel guide, Fodor’s- recommending it to international travellers as one of India’s oldest NGOs working towards the advancement of women- and FabIndia, India’s largest private platform for traditional and hand based process; who loves patterning with Sadhna. 

The members of Sadhna fall in the age bracket of 25-60 years. They hail from villages which conventionally ban them from sharing in public places, thus, they are glad to have Sadhna as a creative outlet from which they not only profit, but experience sharing themselves with the world. These women take the incredible responsibility of sales, finance, attending and showcasing exhibitions. This allows them to provide proper food and quality education to their children, securing their future. 

For its exceptional initiatives, it has received the India Development Marketplace Award by the World Bank and IFC in 2011. It has been prescribed the Citi Micro Entrepreneur Award instituted by the Citibank [2011] and the Seal of Excellence by UNESCO in 2006 and 2008.

Apart from bagging these awards, it has also taken over the hearts of the people of India by displaying a phenomenal amount of talent, hard-work and discipline. Their mission remains to double the artisans’ incomes and empower ordinary women by building their self-esteem, creating awareness of their responsibilities and rights and breaking gender barriers which enables them to be wonderful role models for other women in their society. 

Authored and Edited by: Nayantara Rao

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