August 2023 | 160 words | 1-minute read
For decades, families in the Kamrup and Nalbari districts of Assam viewed their generations-old tradition of weaving as a leisure-time activity. Passed down from mother to daughter (and occasionally to son), weaving was rarely seen as a source of primary income for the household.
Then in 2018, Antaran — the crafts-based livelihood initiative of the Tata Trusts — was launched in Kamrup and Nalbari, and later in Dimapur in Nagaland. Weavers received training to expand product lines, use natural fabrics and dyes and incorporate new designs. (Pictured above: The first batch of artisan entrepreneurs in the Antaran programme after their training in 2019). They were also provided with marketing support, particularly with online sales.
Antaran has opened up new avenues for Assam’s weavers. More than 1,200 artisan weavers have been enabled through the project. Then there are the artisan entrepreneurs, who have earnings of Rs 200,000 to Rs 800,000 a year. That’s not so traditional.
Source: Tata Trusts’ Horizons, April 2023 issue