Enabling crafts people to become self-sustainable

Indian Heritage Arts and Crafts

One of the verticals chalked out in the portfolio of Titan CSR is the Indian Heritage Arts and Crafts. Under this, our primary focus is supporting craft communities and revive or sustain the practice of heritage crafts as a livelihood option.

The interventions vis-à-vis support is holistic, long-term in nature covering various elements that a craft group requires like design, marketing, skill upgradation, process improvisation, infrastructure in some cases et al. The core objective is to enable the craftspeople become self-sustainable.

Some projects that have been supported by Titan are –

1. Porgai – which means ‘Pride’ in their language is a group of 65 lambadi women based out of the Sittlingi valley in Tamil Nadu. The group practices Lambadi hand embroidery and makes products like garments, soft furnishings, fabric jewellery etc. Titan’s support for 3 years for the group encompassed design, marketing exhibits, upskilling, skilling new women and a centre for exhibiting their products, storage, conducting of trainings etc.

2. Kashmiri Handicrafts – Titan supported CtoK (Commitment to Kashmir), an NGO to handhold 25 craft entrepreneurs. The crafts range across textile and non-textile based crafts - Crewel & Chain Stitch, Aari, Tila, Sozni, Namda (woollen carpents), Pashmina, Leather, Copperware, Paper Mache Naqashi, Paper Mache Sakhta, Walnut Wood Carving.

Design and technology collaborations were used as the key drivers for this project, bringing about a transformation in certain crafts by blending contemporary design with the traditional hand skills, thereby enhancing the marketability of the products and in turn providing a catalyst for improved livelihood opportunities to the entrepreneurs and the 10 -25 artisans that they in turn support

3. Kashika – Project ‘Kashika’ from Varanasi aims at improving the socio-economic condition of 55 women by supporting them in learning and practicing the traditional crafts of Handloom Weaving, Zari-Zardozi and Gulabi Meenakari.

The uniqueness of this project reflects in women being able to learn and practice crafts that are traditionally practiced by men in Varanasi, namely weaving and minakari. Executed by an NGO, Human Welfare Association, the project aims at making these women self-sufficient and independent.

4. Charakha – One of the most recent collaboration is with the Charaka group that is one of the largest producers of Naturally Dyed Handwoven Fabric in the Country. Setup in 1996 in Heggodu village, Shivamogga District of Karnataka, it has a 600 + workforce consisting of 85% women.

They practice handloom weaving with 100% ecologically sustainable processes and zero wastage. The areas of intervention include design and development of home furnishings, apparels and textiles, reviving the traditional Udupi Saree in naturally dyed yarn, skilling and upskilling, management training by industry experts and market exposures.