LCA – Kolkata, India
In the heart of Kolkata is a large red light area. Women are forced into the ‘flesh trade’ not by choice but because of poverty. After generations of this lifestyle the cycle is now broken. The women are trained to make journals, memo-boxes, scarves, throw rugs and more! As well as providing economic freedom, each product tells a story of a woman given dignity and self-worth, giving them a chance at a life they otherwise would not have had.
All their products are not only fair trade, but also eco-friendly. They upcycle beautiful saris (the garments worn by women in India) to make the scarves, throws, and to cover the journals and memo boxes, making each item unique! They also hand make all the paper for the stationery products themselves, it is handmade from cotton rags and recycled woollen throw rugs, mixed with natural fibres, such as rice straw, jute, flowers or coloured cotton fibres to give a mottling effect. The paper is made from recycled waste, and contains no wood-fibre, making it completely environmentally friendly. After drying, the papers are dyed and cut into sheets, ready to be used in all sorts of applications imaginable.