When I first met Pooja she was very timid and reserved, always covering her face with her sari and keeping to herself. After spending the week with her last month I can report a complete transformation. The difference can be easily noticed in the photos of her compared to last year, but the sari has been dropped from her face and she exudes joy and playfulness. She willingly interacted with the other artisans, cracked jokes with me and was consistently smiling while working.Pooja is a 23-year old artisan expecting her first child this year. She still attends workshops and is dedicated to creating new product at 8-months pregnant! Pooja’s biggest worry now is her unborn child's future and making sure she will be able to provide food, clothes and shelter.
Pooja values her job with Anchal and the opportunities it affords her. She is currently living in the kitchen of a shared home, but dreams of building her own house. Through the educational workshops provided through Anchal, she has opened her first bank account and saves a portion of every paycheck to make her dream a reality. Pooja proudly shared that she was able to purchase silver for the first time this year from her earnings. Purchases like jewelry are so meaningful to the artisans because they rarely treat themselves to such splurges. I am humbled by Pooja’s dedication and growth; she recognizes the importance of hard work and the impact it has on her. She wanted to make sure I shared her appreciation for the people supporting her and buying her products,"My talent is always increasing. I am proud my name is on the pieces and I am proud it is seen around the world."
Your sponsorship last year during #GivingTuesday guaranteed Pooja was able to provide a better life for herself and her unborn child, but also a sustainable environment for her to learn and work. We hope to give Pooja the same gift this year on #GivingTuesday. Let's sponsor Pooja together for 2017!