Kit Blog

The elephant in the room

30 Oct 2017 | Author: Belinda Pettman

Uttam Kumar Paul is 60 years old and works in his father’s business with his three brothers. Shariatpur district, where he lives, is in southern part of Bangladesh. Most of the people in his village are traditional potters producing a variety of clay and terracotta items.

Under Uttam and his family there are 300 artisans.  Male artisans collect the clay from the riverside, they also manage molding and firing. Product making, design cutting, drying and preparation for firing are managed by female artisans. Most are women who produce from their homes.

A designer from HEED Handicrafts inspired Uttam to produce for foreign markets.  Now he designs innovative samples and products as per buyers’ requirements.  Uttam’s close relationship with  HEED Handicrafts has now spanned over 30 years.  Over this time his life and livelihood have dramatically changed. His children are studying at the top-ranked university and colleges.

“I am ever so grateful to HEED Handicrafts, ” he says.

The other artisan’s source of income has also raised and developed their socio-economic situation. Now they have enough food for meals, their children are also going to school and women are confident in their rights.

Uttam is excited and planning for the future.  If you’d like to get on board with Uttam’s dreams for his family and community – why not buy an elephant tealight candle holder from The Leprosy Mission store?  Your thoughtful gift to a loved one will help Uttam’s loved ones live life free from poverty.

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