In August I had the distinct privilege of spending 7 days in India with the women of Mahalir Aran Trust, MAT, who are making the very first ZOË product, a luxurious limited edition throw!
While I was there 12 women graduated from a training course developed by Janet Rogers of VIA Design. An organization that has been working with the Mercy Abraham Imondi and the women of Mahalir Aran Trust for the past 6 years to develop the ability to produce fine quality textiles products. In total there are 20 women who are working as we speak on making the 500 throws that will make their way across the ocean to us.
MAT, VIA, and ZOË have come together to develop a growing and ongoing business in the Dharmapuri District, south of Bangalore in a very rural part of India.
Everyone is thrilled to be working and providing ongoing income for the great need in the community. For more history and information on the challenges of this area go to the communities page on the main site.
Visit this part of the blog regularly for updates from the field on developments with our Indian partners and to meet some of the people.
For this post, I’d like you to meet Priya and Darshini. Priya is the little girl in our product information brochure who wants to be a teacher when she grows up and her mother Darshini is one of the recent graduates working on the throws.
The most touching part of the experience for me was a simple moment. I had brought a small gift of an outfit, (the one you see Priya wearing), and when she opened it she almost cried. It was a small gesture, one of gratitude for a little girl spending a few hours in the sun getting her pictures taken for our brochure, but it meant a lot more to her.
When we do these small things it makes a big difference, it was a good reminder.