Income Generation through Handicraft


The handicraft sector offers excellent Blue Collar income generation opportunities for women in rural and urban marginalised areas, in particular in rather traditional villages or informal urban areas where socio-cultural circumstances make it difficult for women to leave their homes for work purposes. The key prerequisite is the adaptation of training and production to the restricted mobility of the handicraft workers, as well as to other socio-cultural determining factors.

In this context, handicraft is an ideal field of activity, in particular when focusing on high-quality handmade products with attractive and market-oriented designs, in contrast to the widely spread mass production under critical working conditions. Handicraft can be produced at home, has a socio-culturally accepted image, is already known to a certain extent, requires relatively low investment costs for training and production and needs only low to medium level of technical skills, which can be acquired rather easily. In general, other fields of activity can be taken into consideration as well, which fulfil these criteria.

For this chapter, additional experiences, beyond the ones collected during the PBC projects in Fayoum and Cairo (see overall introduction), made in the Project "Qualification and Employment Promotion for Women Working in Handicraft and Small Trade in South Sinai, Egypt" have also been included. The project aimed at securing employment of female producers in St. Catherine through mobilisation of the rural/tribal community in Tarabeen (coastal area around Nuweiba), training, product design, quality management and linkages to new local and international markets in Cairo.

What is inside the Chapter?

The chapter is made of 4 tools which describe:

>> Tool 6.1 - How to Reach Out to and Mobilise Women for Handicraft Work >> Tool 6.2 - How to Train Women for Handicraft Work >> Tool 6.3 - How to Jointly Develop Market-Oriented Handicraft Products >> Tool 6.4 - How to Successfully Place Handicraft Products on the Market

Ideally, all four tools in this chapter are being implemented in an integrative approach.

>> Annex Symbolic Drawings for Community Mobilisation Patchwork Training Manual (English) Patchwork Training Material (English) Market Study in the Handicraft Textile Sector (English) Evaluation Report for Project on Income Generation through Textile Handicrafts (English) Legal Set-Up Options for Community Initiatives (English) Mood Board for Product Design Development Product Sampling based upon Design Drafts (English) Brochure Khalta goes Textile (English) Flyer Fansina St. Catherine (English)