The good news for you is that the profit is
shared between you and the producers, because we are not using
middlemen. This means that you get cheap handmade quality knitwear
and the people in Nepal get a better profit!
The objective of Hipknit is to
empower women in poor and remote villages through a micro-credit
programme. The micro-credit programme aims to make economic
participation possible for women, thereby increasing their income,
socio-economic status, and, hence, their self-confidence.
So far, 25 women have received free training
in knitting, cross-knitting and business practices. The only
investment the women make is in their knitting needles (two
knitting needles cost approximately 40 NR, which is around USD
0.60). The women knit sweaters, hats, scarfs, and other products,
which are sold on the international market. SHEWD provides the
wool and cotton, both organic, required by the women to make
SHEWD applies fair trade principles: the
women make NR 150 (around 2 USD) a day, which is a higher wage
(how much do these other women make, on average?) than that
paid to women in the area selling to other buyers. SHEWD takes
NR 2 (0.03 USD) per product sold, and invests this in its other
programmes (see the SHEWD home page for further information
on SHEWDs programmes)
The positive impact of Hipknit extends beyond
income generation, with feedback showing that the socio-economic
status of the women involved in the programme has improved.
Many of the women are also using their wages to send their children
to school as they are now able to pay the tuition fees.
SHEWD plans to expand Hipknit and is aiming
for 15 women in each of Lalitpur’s 41 Village Development
Councils (VDC) (i.e. 615 women in total) to benefit from the
micro-credit programme by the end of 2009. SHEWD plans not only
to increase the number of women participating, but also to increase
the range of activities to include vegetable farming and rearing
goats. SHEWD is currently selling knitted products to France,
but is looking for other wholesale buyers.
SHEWD is looking for funding to allow it
to expand Hipknit. To help towards the funding, SHEWD is planning
a 1-day exhibition in the tourist district on Thamel in October
2007. This exhibition aims to sell Hipknit products and collect
donations. The exhibition will also increase awareness of Hipknit
among tourists and the ways in which tourists can contribute
to the programme
Take a look at our wide range of fashion
and accessories and select your own print and colors with your
favorite items. We will make it the way you like it!