Promoting Local Artisans

One of our key objectives is to develop and promote livelihoods. We do this by working with small traditional businesses and artisans to improve their visibility and facilitate access to a more diverse market. We pay the local artisans up to twice as much as the local market value for each piece and any profit made by NERF goes back into the charity funds and toward our projects. We do this in an effort to help preserve and promote traditional artisanal methods and craftsmanship and to stabilise the rural economy.   

 
Baskets weaved using a durable double-weave technique by a craftsman from Maandra, Sindhupalchok

Baskets weaved using a durable double-weave technique by a craftsman from Maandra, Sindhupalchok

OnLine Store

To see the range of products from each of the local artisans
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Suku Mia Nepali, her daughter in law Sita and grand-children, Sandeep, Sabin and Sajina in a 'temporary' shelter.

Suku Mia Nepali, her daughter in law Sita and grand-children, Sandeep, Sabin and Sajina in a 'temporary' shelter.

Jagar Birey and Suku Mia Nepali
Gaathi VDC, Sindhupalchok

As an ex-Dalit family, Suku Mia and Jagaar Birey Nepali live just outside of the main village boundaries of Gaathi, together with their children and grandchildren. As children of a marginalised caste Suku and Jagar received no education, and the Surke-Thalis, (small traditional bags / purses) they make are a major source of income support for their family.

“I learnt from my husband’s sister 15 years ago and then taught my husband. I still enjoy making them, (Surke-Thalis).
— Suku Mia Nepali

The Nepali family have relied on their skills as tailors for generations. After losing his home 3 times to landslides and the earthquakes the youngest son still lives and works with his parents. However, now both in their 60s, Suku and Jagar are the only local villagers who still have the skills required to make a Surke-Thali.

Krishna Shakia in his post-earthquake living room come make-shift workshop.

Krishna Shakia in his post-earthquake living room come make-shift workshop.

Krishna Shakia Metal Handicrafts
Banepa, Kathmandu 

Pre-earthquake, Krishna and Nanni Shakia ran a successful copper-work business. Post-earthquake, after losing their home and workshop, the family worked hard to build and improve their shelters, and have finally re-opened their own small store. Despite being labelled as 'low-caste' under the old system and receiving no education they've funded their children's education through their business. 

“ I learnt from my parents, and when we married, Krishna learnt how to make them, (incense holders) as well. It was the only thing I trained how to do.”
— Nanni Shakia

Post-earthquake, after losing their home and workshop, the family worked hard to build and improve their shelters, and have finally re-opened their own small store. Both their children Sabin and Isan are attending school, and still practise the traditional skills of their family.

 

Coming Soon. . . 

3-sided prayer knives made from locally source smoked wood
and
hand-woven bamboo baskets and carrying cases

We've been fortunate enough to connect with artisans working higher up the mountains who are using techniques and methods that have remained the same for hundreds of years. We cannot wait to bring you the examples of your work so we can work together to support this traditional cultural heritage.