Success Stories

September Newsletter 2021

Delivering 15175 Rakhis in 10 days

Grabbing first Business opportunity is often an essential determinant of the path one sets to travel. Reaching there reasserts one's confidence and motivation and re-enthuses one to progress steadily. This is what happened to members of Nirjhari Women Artisan Producer Company. The first order company received is from AU Small Finance Bank in the festive season of Rakhi. The Bank gave an order to deliver 15175 Rakhi within two weeks. The order was confirmed 2 weeks before and was delivered in 10 days.The entrepreneurial journey….

“इस आदेश से हम सभी बेहद खुश हैं। क्योंकि यह हमारी कंपनी का पहला और इतना बड़ा ऑर्डर है, इस ऑर्डर को पूरा करने के लिए लगभग ५० महिलाओ ने दिन रात काम किया और १० दिन में औसतन ३००० रुपये कमाए।.(We are all very happy with this order. Because this is the first and such a big order of our company, through this around 30 women worked day and night to fulfill this order and earned an average of Rs. 3000 in 10 days.)”

The AU Foundation promoted Nirjhari Women Artisan Company of a group of women who have been trained in making home furnishing eco-friendly products. The company was registered in March 2021, and the formalities regarding the opening of the account, GST registration, got delayed in the wake of the 2nd wave of pandemic lockdown. This delay in the process led to a loss of livelihood and income and has troubled many in the past months. Hence, getting the order of Rakhi was a motivation factor for artisans to kick start their entrepreneurial journey.

This was an opportunity they had been waiting for from the time of inception of the company, but the road to its completion was not at all easy. The delivery deadline and bulk procurement of raw materials in a short period with limited capital seemed hugely challenging. The women facilitated dialogues with company directors, chief executive officers, and other stakeholders to build trust with an extensive interpersonal skillset. The loan was made from a personal contribution to meet the capital crunch. Bulk vendors were searched for and communicated across all mediums to get most raw materials. Artisans convened field-level meetings to identify, select, and train women on product making. All possible support from AU Small Finance Bank was roped in supporting the packaging, printing of product units. The process of Rakhi making was phased out in a Total of 30 artisan. They were divided in 2 broad sections to work: firstly, artisans worked from home on making the Rakhi flower and thread; secondly, the other bunch of artisans worked on three different locations in a workshop mode, working dedicatedly for almost eight days to assemble the Rakhi. Many of them were very enthusiastic about their companies' first order that they voluntarily worked overtime after the day's work to support the completion of order. Finally, the last lot was delivered on the 18th of August. This was a day before the deadline. Completing the order in time could be only possible with the hard work of the artisans and the intelligent strategic planning, coordination from women. This is one step towards being self-reliant and overcoming challenges they have encountered towards their journey.

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