PRACTISES

Anywhere and everywhere!
Emerging economies often have a great traditional craft heritage. With insights on product innovation and an improved skill set, it can appeal to a great national and international market and benefit the craft workers.

The Skillful Artisan works like this: the programme starts with contextualisation and adaptation of the curriculum into a local version. After completion of the contextualised local version Butterfly Works guides you through the process of selecting Master trainers. During the whole preparation and implementation period of the programme our skilled project managers can work with you on project management support and the creation of market linkages.

Curriculum adjustment to the context

Making of video tutorials

adapted to the local language and final program

Training master trainers

Project management support

Brand development

Partners

The Skillful Artisan Pakistan is funded by the European Union (EU) as part of their EU EQUATE project: Enhancing Quality and Access to TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) for Employability Pakistan. This project is implemented by Oxfam Novib Pakistan together with Butterfly Works, the Indus Valley School for Art and Architecture (IVS).and the local NGOs Indus Resource Centre (IRC) and Resource and Development Foundation (RDF).

image/svg+xml EU

The EU is supporting vocational training in Pakistan with a €46 million investment. This is used both to support the government in their National Skills Strategy as well as funding a number of grant projects in different provinces throughout the country, including The Skillful Artisan.

image/svg+xml Oxfam Novib

Oxfam Novib is implementing partner of the EU in raising the quality of accessibility of technical and vocational training services in Sindh province of Pakistan. Oxfam has been working in Pakistan since 1973. They support local partners and work with government authorities to improve the livelihoods of those living in poverty, and provide humanitarian assistance to those affected by disasters and conflict.

The EU is supporting vocational training in Pakistan with a €46 million investment. This is used both to support the government in their National Skills Strategy as well as funding a number of grant projects in different provinces throughout the country, including The Skillful Artisan.

Oxfam Novib is implementing partner of the EU in raising the quality of accessibility of technical and vocational training services in Sindh province of Pakistan. Oxfam has been working in Pakistan since 1973. They support local partners and work with government authorities to improve the livelihoods of those living in poverty, and provide humanitarian assistance to those affected by disasters and conflict.

International and Pakistani partners

Since 2012, Butterfly Works, Oxfam Novib Pakistan, Indus Resource Center, and the Research and Development Foundation, have joined forces to help raise the income of 1600 craftswomen in the Sindh Province of Pakistan. To ensure the project is adapted to the Pakistani context we also partnered with the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture (IVS) and a Pakistani designer.

A unique training and brand

The Skillful Artisan training consists of 12 interactive lessons covering both theory and practice. The focus is on improving existing skills, rather than teaching new crafts, and making artisans better producers, rather than independent designers. In the lessons on entrepreneurship, artisans learn amongst others how to negotiate prices or link directly to the market. This way, the margin is not lost to middlemen anymore. In the lessons on design innovation, traditional crafts are combined with a modern feel while the artisans’ skills, wishes and needs form the heart of the training.

To make the course easily accessible, eight master trainers travel from village to village to teach one lesson and homework a week. The home­based artisans do not need to travel outside of their village, and the schedule fits their weekly chores seamlessly. By working in small groups for the lessons and homework, the women can exchange experiences and extend their social and professional network. A series of video lessons show the world of design, and make artisans part of it. It also allows trainers to focus on facilitating the practical assignments and the learning process, instead of only conveying knowledge.

To tell the artisan story and give the women a head start in finding new markets, Butterfly Works and IVS created a new brand; “Kahani ­ crafts with a story”. The product designs are a result of a co­creation process where a team of artisans, IVS students and international designers worked together. The relatively high end label of interior products shows the women’s strong crafts skills and the region’s great crafts heritage. It is sold through the brand’s store in Karachi.

Results so far

The trainers have so far trained two groups of in total 960 artisans. At the end of February 2015, a selection of craftswomen participated in the annual national crafts fair where they demonstrated their skills and products. By September 2015 we plan to have trained 1600 women and to have constructed a sales network to facilitate their work. For the Kahani brand, a sample book is in the making. We are also proud to see that the store in Karachi is attracting fashion producers and managers from warehouses. The first orders have already been placed – also from international customers!

More on the Skillful Artisan? Please contact Lotje.

About:​ craftsmanship, collaboration, branding, design, market linkages, sales.

Location: ​Sindh region, Pakistan.

Partners: ​Oxfam Novib Pakistan, Indus Resource Center, Research and Development Foundation, Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture (IVS), Pakistani crafts curriculum experts, business and market consultants, crafts women association and designers.

Donor: ​European Union

Butterfly Works

Ms. van Riemsijkweg 57
1033 RC Amsterdam
The Netherlands

tel. +31204711780
www.butterflyworks.org