“Don’t get bogged down by the notion of limits. There aren’t any”-Sunita Williams.

Women Empowerment Through Phulkari Program

The Nabha foundation launched the Phulkari Traditional Craft Program in 2007. Nabha is a region where economic inequality has a social basis. The sex ratio of the area is deeply unsettling. The problem of poverty has a gender bias. Economic dependence on the male members of the family; further increases the inequality reinforcing the inferior position of women in the social institutions. The phulkari program aims to bring about a structural change in the community otherwise entrenched with inequality. It aims to empower the marginalized rural woman, generate sustainable home based employment, which leads to greater participation in the society, giving these women a sense of fulfilment and economic independence.

The phulkari program is leading a process to mainstream Nabha’s heritage into contemporary life and also using it as a means to transform the community. It is not just a commercial venture but has brought about a 360 degree turn in the life of these women. It has brought change in their economic position but also in the way they see the world.

“Phulkari is a beautiful amalgamation of Punjab’s rich heritage, tradition and craft. It has always been a pride to own exquisite phulkari and they are even passed down generations as family heirloom. Today, phulkari has evolved as a dignified source of livelihood and empowerment for many women artisans. These handcrafted pieces of art will become priceless in future”

– Maharajkumari Charanjeet Kaur of Nabha.

Phulkari is a traditional form of embroidery which has great significance and sentimental value in the area. It had lost its popularity with the coming of market economy and thus couldn’t compete with the cheaper and varied machine made garments. The phulkari self-help group organizes women artisans as a substantive unit. The women are imparted with niche skills in embroidery and design making them the finest phulkari artisans in the country. The group produces one of the finest qualities of phulkari which has helped them retain their exclusive appeal. Phulkari thus has found a new meaning and varied modern interpretations. It was a traditional craft which had great historical value, but now it’s a source of livelihood and a part of everyday life of the women of Nabha.

The focus is on continued capacity building of the artisans. The venture is certified by Craftmark and NIFT, Delhi has conducted workshops to train the artisans. A garment range by our artisans has been showcased at the Lakme India Fashion Week, 2017 in Mumbai. The program aims to establish “Nabha Phulkari” as a coveted brand.

The phulkari program is leading a process to mainstream Nabha’s heritage into contemporary life and also using it as a means to transform the community. It is not just a commercial venture but has brought about a 360 degree turn in the life of these women. It has brought change in their economic position but also in the way they see the world.

Our continued effort is to improve and widen the below impact:

  • Improved economic & social status of women in Nabha through Phulkari
  • Revival of traditional Phulkari Craft and popularising it globally
  • Increased economic opportunities for women in Nabha

Phulkari Brochure

Skill Training for Women: Beauty Care

The Nabha Foundation aims to empower the marginalized women, who are below the poverty line through skilling. The Foundation took up a Project on Skin and Beauty Care in 2015, in collaboration with Societies for Services to Voluntary Agencies, to establish Beauty-Care as viable career amongst the marginalized women. The students are trained in various tasks required to be beauticians. They are taught the importance of good hygiene practices; a prerequisite for this profession. The foundation also helps in the placement process after imparting vocational skills.

Our continued effort is to improve and widen the below impact:

  • The program is in great demand; the participants are getting good work right after the completion of this course
  • Leadership skills are enhanced and women are setting up their own business and becoming entrepreneurs
  • This has brought about economic independence and stability for the young, underprivileged women of Nabha and is inspiring more women to be self-reliant.