In 2022/23 MESH bought products from 27 producer groups across 13 Indian states. Each producer group works especially for people affected by leprosy or people with disabilities. Some are integrated groups of marginalized men and women who work alongside people with disabilities; others are employing only people affected by leprosy and their family members.
Some groups are large and run with strong management and high levels of organisation, others are tiny, self-run, self-help groups who need much more hand holding. All of the producer groups are autonomous and work independently of MESH. We help them with marketing, design and capacity building as necessary.
We are delighted to work with them and proud of them all.
Find out more about each group by clicking on the names below.
KUKA is a leprosy colony that has a weaving unit; their tea towels have attracted orders across the globe for many years. They buy organic and non-organic yarn, dye it in-house and weave the fabric. Apart fromtea towels they make bathmats,tablecloths, and napkins. The profit from the weaving work is shared in the whole community so even those who cannot work have some income from the sales.
Aharam is a weaving group. The management provides work throughout the year. MESH has contributed considerably towards their efforts as a result of large orders for organic cotton hand woven towels for a German Fair Trade Wholesale Company.
POWHER is an award-winning, charitable trust based in Delhi providing opportunities for women and people with disabilities for empowerment and rehabilitation. They have supplied an assortment of stitched and printed products.
Care Kashmir is a small disability organization that specializes in papier-mâché art; MESH sells a lot of their Christmas decorations across the world.
Little Flower Leprosy Rehabilitation Centre, is another leprosy community of weavers; their specialty is eri silk spinning and weaving. The processing, from receiving the silk cocoons through spinning and dying the yarn to weaving and calendaring is all done in-house. Their most sold product is handspun eri silk scarves which sell well in Japan especially.
Beyond The Life is a self-run youth society in a leprosy colony that has ten active tailors making bags and converting KUKA’s fabric into kitchen linen.
.Society for Child Development started as a school for children with disabilities and now provides employment to many people with disabilities, doing weaving and sewing, their specialty is upcycling and recycling waste of all kinds. In 2021 they started weaving fabrics to take overflow orders from KUKA including floor cloths and tea towels for export in Europe and USA.
Bethany Leprosy Colony employs weavers on small looms making heavy duty cotton strips which they sew into purses and bags. They also work with canvas using their cotton weaving as a feature. MESH has worked with Bethany for more than thirty years exporting their bags across the world, including, USA and Japan.
Khadim Handicrafts is a small production unit in the heart of Uttar Pradesh's industrial belt about five hours drive from New Delhi. They are distinguished from the other many small industries in their town of Sambhal by their efforts to practice fair trade principles as explained to them by MESH. They work with horn, bone and resin and have diversified into wood making Christmas decorations for the international market.
Jone Pryadarshini Mahila Mandal (JPMM)[/link] is women's self help group in a leprosy colony in S. India. They have supplied urn and jewellery bags for funeral parlours in Canada, gift wrap storage bags for TLM Trading U.K. and a a brand new product, a kitchen scrub made of coconut fibers sold to Welt Partner in Germany.
Anand Crafts is the name of the group of members from Anand Mahila Mandal who produce products by tatting and crochet. They are based in a leprosy colony in Delhi and this year they have introduced new eco friendly crocheted jute kitchen scrubs which have been a success with Welt Partner in Germany.
Blue Mango Trust in rural Tamil Nadu, employs only women, including those with disabilities. They make wonderful personal accessories and soft toys from traditional block printed fabrics. Their doorstops and cosmetic bags are newly featured ranges in 2023.
Prowess is a very successful women's self help group located in Kodai Kanal, in S. India. They supply most of MESH's soft toys but have a strong local market for their cold weather quilts and duvets.
Father Muller Charitable Trust is a huge organization that includes a small rehab unit for people with disabilities and affected by leprosy. They sew, make cards and block print fabrics. Their handmade elephant cards have been favourites with TLM Trading UK for many years.
This list is not exhaustive, we will add more gradually.
This video below is a delightful collection of producers who have made things for MESH over the years.