Weavers of Assam can now market their products globally as Balipara Foundation has joined hands with China on a joint venture for the local weavers.
The Balipara Foundation is a conservation group based in Assam. They are working with Kunming Institute of Botany (KIB) in China on projects like livelihood enhancement and a campaign, I Weave You Wear.
Balipara Foundation informed about the initiatives at a press conference in Guwahati on Friday.
A team from Balipara Foundation, including founder trustee Ranjit Borthakur, managing member Prabir Banerjea, Rural Futures designer Saurav Malhotra and Naturenomics eco-designer Arita Kashyap, participated in the second Mountain Futures conference organized by KIB in Kunming, China, on June 6-7.
Representatives from 30 countries attended the meet to discuss themes like ecosystem rhythms: understanding change, land systems: managing complexity and enhancing livelihoods: role of gender and local institutions.
It provided participants an opportunity to shape the future of the people living in mountains, to share knowledge with researchers from mountain regions around the world.
Malhotra said, “Through Balipara Foundation’s Rural Futures programme, we are generating livelihoods for people of the state living near forests by increasing forest cover. Our partner in China, the KIB, has a similar concept called Mountain Futures. We will be working on a partnership in conservation by using Chinese technology. We will announce it at the Eastern Himalaya Naturenomics Forum 2018 to be held on November 1-2 this year.”
The institutions are planning a secretariat in Yunnan for conservation efforts.
Kashyap elaborated on the weavers’ campaign, I Weave You Wear, that Balipara Foundation is supporting through the brand, Wuya, reports The Telegraph.
“Assam has a rich heritage in weaving and is endemic to muga silk. We will look to using technology in terms of designing and making the best quality yarn without flaws. We want to build a sustainable livelihood for weavers through the Rural Futures initiative. Under the campaign, each product with individual tags containing information about the weaver will be marketed under our Assamica and Wuya brands. Even when we are not there, the weaver can work in an individual capacity as the information will be available to the buyers,” Kashyap said.