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Empowering Artisans and Transforming Waste: ASIX's Journey with Shipu

Updated: May 30

In 2013, ASIX uncovered a hidden talent named Shipu in Talora, Bogra, a village 208 km away from the capital, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Shipu, a local artisan, possessed a unique skill for crafting handmade baskets from palm fiber, a proficiency honed during her childhood through self-learning and hands-on experience.

Asix Journey with a rural artisan

Recognizing Shipu's potential, ASIX embarked on a transformative journey to enhance her skills and empower her life. Shipu, once a simple village lady, became the focal point of ASIX's efforts to transform her into an expert and ambitious trainer.

Afsana and the ASIX team provided continuous training, guidance, and support, enabling Shipu to empower other women in her community, creating an efficient and enduring workforce.

As Shipu embraced her role, ASIX maintained its commitment to nurturing skills and providing opportunities. This collaboration resulted in a significant increase in manufacturing and the export of high-quality handmade products. Under Shipu's guidance, 30 women artisans in the village received training and honed their craft.

Shipu's dedication to craftsmanship mirrored ASIX's commitment to skill development and opportunity provision. Together, they propelled the manufacturing and export of top-quality products, reaching international markets in the USA, Canada, UK, Portugal, Spain, Australia, and New Zealand.

Linking Shipu and ASIX with global design, local weaving techniques, and natural materials, their collaborative efforts not only produced exquisite crafts but also won the hearts of global buyers.

The fusion of global design elements with Shipu's local weaving techniques, using indigenous natural materials, not only created unique products but also contributed to making the world a better place.

This collaboration went beyond empowering individuals and communities; it extended to unleashing potential from waste materials. ASIX's innovative approach involves processing palm leaves, which are often wasted, to make fibers.

The team utilizes these natural palm fibers to create various lifestyle solutions, including table placemats, coasters, napkin holders, wall decor, bread baskets, fruit baskets, tote bags, and more.

ASIX delivers on its promise of sustainable living by providing globally relevant designs that repurpose waste materials, contributing to a more eco-friendly and responsible global lifestyle.

This story is a testament to the power of collaboration, innovation, and the positive impact that small communities can have on a global scale. Shipu's journey from artisan to team leadership vividly showcased the empowerment of rural women that ASIX aimed to achieve.

ASIX and Shipu played a pivotal role in transforming lives, inspiring a community of women to embrace their talents, contribute meaningfully, and stand as equals in the world of artisanal craftsmanship. Their collaborative efforts illuminated a path of empowerment, resilience, and success, echoing the transformative impact of women supporting each other.


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