To empower underprivileged women by allowing them the chance to use their talent to generate an income
26-28 January, 2017, Jessore - The idea behind the project Weaving Dreams is to empower underprivileged women by allowing them the chance to use their skills and talent in a way that can generate an income for them so that they can support themselves along with their families. This project has been designed as a social business that will be able to sustain itself by generating a profit. The women will be asked to sew and make clothing and various handicraft products that will be sold in Dhaka with the aid of YES Alumni Bangladesh and the income and profit generated from these sales will be given back to the women as their own earnings and will also be used to develop the project further. In order to do this, it is necessary to have a clear idea about the demands of the market and the clothing business, along with necessary information about all the expenses involved. To conduct research regarding this, a group of YES alumni travelled to Jessore, where there is an abundance of clothing and handicraft factories, to get a good idea about how to proceed with this project. On 26th January, 2016 at 5 p.m, a group of alumni visited “New Fashion Today” a handicraft and clothing store owned by Md. Faruk Raihan (Rana). There the alumni were given valuable information about the cost price and selling price of various products, they learned where and how these products are made, the appropriate material that needs to be used and where to find them. Then on 28th January, 2016 at 10 a.m, the alumni group accompanied by Md. Faruk Raihan (Rana) travelled to one of the factories to actually see how these products are made and by whom. The alumni questioned the women and men working there on the variety of products they can make, how long it might take and also about the type of material they are comfortable working with. Later that day, around 4 p.m, the alumni group travelled to “Banchte Sekha”, a Bangladeshi NGO that is running a similar project like Weaving Dreams, at their office the alumni were greeted by Mrs. Lili Biswas, the Jessore branch co-ordinator of Banchte Sekha. Mrs. Lili Biswas showed some handicraft products that they were currently making, gave a brief description on who they work with, how this project was started, their main customer base and how they keep this project running. The alumni group returned to Dhaka later that night after gathering necessary information to make sure that the project Weaving Dreams can now begin and run smoothly.