Art and craft don’t just tell stories. They carry them in their physical dimensions. This is possibly what makes a handcrafted product so much more special than a machine-made one. Snehadhara’s Jaaji group has been working on crafting earrings, making envelopes from recycled paper and fabric, making newspaper-roll trays, etc for a while now. These products are created over a leisurely timeline with the children’s and adults’ needs at the forefront, and not the deadline or the “order” requirements.
From this experimentation with learner led craft was born Kala Avahita – which roughly translates as mindfulness through the arts. The goal is to work towards creating beautiful, saleable products though crafting; to build multiple skills like designing, counting, working in teams etc. The larger focus is on creating a space for dialogue with the public about the needs of children and adults with physical and intellectual disabilities. Happy side-effects include strengthening of social skills, pushing for adaptability, working with timelines and creating a solid business model that could cater to the needs of the crafters.
Barely a few months into its birth, Kala Avahita has recorded its first international footprint! Jamarko, Nepal recently showcased Kala Avahita products at its store in Lalitpur, Nepal. Jamarko’s mission is to create awareness about the importance of reducing consumption and waste, reusing and recycling materials, and designing handmade recycled paper and products as an alternative to consumers. Jamarko was therefore the perfect space for Kala Avahita products.
Kritika Lacoul, the founder of the store, was very impressed with the quality of the earrings and even suggested that this could become the primary product of the Kala Avahita range. The products were specially arranged for display at the store, with the poster describing the intent of this creative journey holding a prime place. The very first day saw a very happy customer who bought a pair of earrings she liked very much. The children and adults who made these products have been receiving much love from the founder and customers at this store they have not seen but made more beautiful with their creative efforts and expressions.
What more could we ask for?
(A happy customer)