U-Chus Fair Trade: About the Makers
Pictured: An artisan in Bangladesh weaving a U-Chus basket.
Artisans' Location: Bangladesh
Demographics: Majority women in rural areas with various religious backgrounds
Materials: Locally-sourced jute, seagrass (hogla) and palm leaves
Certifications and memberships: WFTO (World Fair Trade Organisation) and Fair Traders of Australia
Values: Ethical trading, empowering women and disavantaged producers, and sustainability
Corr the Jute Works
Pictured: A group of women artisans in Bangladesh wearing colourful saris weave strands of jute.
Corr the Jute Works is a Fair Trade organisation that works with artisans in Bangladesh who hand-weave home decor, tableware and bags using locally-sourced jute. The organisation adheres to the 10 Principles of Fair Trade, including paying artisans a fair wage for their work and ensuring safe work conditions. In 2016, artisans received 16 taka per hour, which is considered a fair wage.
The mobile nature of producing jute handicrafts allows women to work from home in between other household activities and looking after children. The additional funds they earn enable them to supplement their marginal family income and contribute to living expenses and their children's education.
Meet the Makers
Pictured: Two women artisans in Bangladesh wearing pink saris weave together jute baskets.
"My dream has become a reality. My sorrows are gone and my hopes have been answered. Many of us are poor, but no one can blame us for this. Working and earning, we can change our lives."
Pictured: A woman artisan in Bangladesh weaves a basket.
Margaret Peris, aged 57, is another artisan at Corr the Jute Works. She was one of the first people to start working with the organisation, and talks about how it has benefited her life.
"Without CJW (Corr the Jute Works), it would have been impossible for me to become an active and self-sufficient member of society."
- Margaret Peris, Jute Bag Producer from the village of Daripara (Gazipur district), Bangladesh (via Asia News)