Sewn Into Our Fabrics Is The Story Of Empowerment
Sadhna is a Women’s Handicraft Enterprise registered as a Mutual Benefit Trust. Sadhna started under the income generation program of Seva Mandir (an NGO) in 1988, with the aim of providing an alternative livelihoods to women from resource poor communities in rural, tribal and urban areas around Udaipur in southern Rajasthan. Starting with just a small group of 15 women, today Sadhna has grown to a large family of over 600 women artisans. Sadhna’s commitment to empowering her artisans is clearly visible in it’s structure. The ownership of Sadhna lies in the hands of all her artisans and the surplus earned is distributed back to them. All of Sadhna’s artisans are covered under Social Security Benefits such as Provident Fund and Employee State Insurance Scheme.
With over three decades of work, Sadhna’s artisans have been producing some of the finest traditional hand embroidery on their apparels, home furnishing and accessories. Support Sadhna, Support Artisans!
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All artisans are member owners of Sadhna and part of the General Body, which meet once every year at the Annual General Body Meeting.
The various artisan clusters are represented by periodically elected representatives who constitute the Management Council. The Council meets every Quarter to discuss organization performance, plans and management policies. From the Council emerge various committies such as the social initiative committee, costing committee, Exhibition Comittee to ensure inclusive decision making, well being of the artisans and fair trade practices. The management council comprises of about 40 members representing all artisan members and play a very crucial role in the day-to-day functioning of Sadhna. The members of the council are also responsible for all coordination at the field level related to production , quality and delivery. They are a vital link between the production center and the artisans. They are supported by instructors and feeders from the staff.
Apart from the management Council , two artisans are elected periodically to the Board of Trustees. They are active participants at the Board meetings, which are held twice a year. Sadhna believes that such representative structures are inclusive and add value to the organisations operations and decision making, apart from empowering the women artisans themselves.
Sadhna’s journey is a story of tremendous efforts and commitment. It is a landmark case study demonstrating small efforts leading to a long impactful change. Sadhna has been a learning organization and strives to improve everyday. Starting as an NGO Livelihood program to train 15 women on patchwork to help them combat the after effects of a draught in the Mewar Region of Rajasthan and after years of low production and low sales Sadhna finally achieved commercial viability in 1999-2000. On 10th of December 2004, Sadhna was registered as an independent entity, a women’s artisan’s enterprise listed under the Mutual Benefit Trust Act. Here are some of the milestones part of Sadhna’s Journey.