UN Global Goals


Our Goals are Global

Our company is B Corp Certified, which recognizes our commitment to the highest social and environmental standards. There are 17 United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development. Our business aligns strongly with nine of them:

  • No poverty 
  • Zero hunger
  • Good health and wellbeing 
  • Quality education 
  • Gender equality 
  • Clean water and sanitation 
  • Decent work and economic growth
  • Reduced inequalities
  • Ensure sustainable consumption and production

Learning and Growth

Our employment practices align with these UN sustainable development goals

                    

We employ women who have never been to school or have had minimal formal education. Most of them were unemployed and tied to domestic duties before they came to work at our handknitting hubs. When we set up a handknitting hub in a new village, women come to us seeking work. We talk with potential new hand knitters on what they will be doing and learning with us. Most of them must seek their husband’s permission to work. 

Our women start work on an above average wage. Education starts from day one – learning mathematics, reading English and how to handknit to an exacting artisan standard. We are building a strong business of women producing artisan quality handknitted garments for the fashion industry. Moreover, we are building a business of strong women. In future, we will be the largest, female-majority company of this kind in India. 

Ongoing training is provided to all members of our company to continue to grow and develop us all. For example, in India regular education is provided by the company bringing world-class handknitting teachers to each hub to pass on the latest techniques, and trainers to provide financial counselling. Each woman can continue to build skills in handknitting and management if they choose to grow their career with the company. 

When starting the company, our hand knitters chose their working hours to suit their family life. They are employed full-time and work from 9am - 4pm, with an hour for lunch, six days a week. Within our hubs, ladies knit in groups which has built strong teams, great social communication, and skill sharing. Our women also take walk breaks and drink plenty of water. Drinking water is provided and delivered daily to all our hubs. The hub leader ensures everyone’s water bottles are filled and consumed throughout the day. 

Learning and Growth

Our negotiation practices align with these UN sustainable development goals

        

We are growing leadership muscles in our makers which will empower them to negotiate their needs both at work and at home. Most of these women have grown up in traditional families where women have no voice. As children their parents, particularly fathers, made all the decisions. As adults their husbands make decisions for them. 

When issues arise at the hubs, anything from production hurdles to personal problems, we encourage those involved to discuss possible solutions. The hub talks together to work out which solution brings the greatest benefit to those involved, our work, and the company to move forward. 

This process can take time as the women learn their opinions are valued. The benefit of patience in this method is manifold: if the same issue arises again, it can be solved by the women involved; they can apply the same method to new issues thereby streamlining future situations; teach this method to new knitters; and negotiate within their family to ensure their point of view is heard. 

We are open and transparent to all visitors, whether brands, industry representatives, or volunteers who come to offer additional education. We welcome anyone interested in seeing our hubs in action to get in touch. 

Working Conditions

Our working conditions align with these UN sustainable development goals

  

We provide drinking water, clean bathrooms, and food areas in our handknitting hubs. We take all measures to ensure the safety and hygiene of our makers. 

Our training and induction program cover safety in the workplace, safe use and storage of fibres and needles for knitting. Our supervisors regularly check the work environment and deal with any repairs with landlords. 

Providing clean drinking water and hygienic food and toilet areas align with the following UN sustainable development goals: 

Living Wages

Our wage practices align with these UN sustainable development goals

    

We pay wages and benefits above the living wage. 

We want our makers to be the best version of themselves and that means we look to support them by, for example, ensuring regular eye tests at the hubs. They take pride in their work and, as they progress in their skills, they take pride in themselves. With their growing self-esteem and financial independence, we notice the way they hold themselves changes, it’s like they walk with a sense of self confidence. Their presentation changes, they take great care in the way they wear saris or make up. Some are getting dental treatment to straighten their teeth. The transformation we see is both internal and external. 

No Discrimination

Our hiring practices align with these UN sustainable development goals

  

When people apply to work with us, we don’t ask for their race, caste, gender, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital status, or sexuality. Asking such questions is culturally insensitive, no matter where you are in the world. We are only concerned with a person’s values and passion for working with us. 

Our makers are responsible for engaging and dismissing their own team members. They base their decisions on the person’s values and passion for wanting to embrace our culture and our sisterhood. 

No harsh or inhumane treatment tolerated

Communicating with effect aligns with the following UN sustainable development goals

  

We do not tolerate verbal or physical abuse. Our whole team communicates respectfully. In many cases, our women have been raised in environments where communication is physical rather than verbal. Respectful behaviour and communication are role modelled. 

Regular Employment

Providing stable and regular employment aligns with this UN sustainable development goal

Our women in India work full-time to ensure a stable income for their families and a stable workforce for our customers. We do not practice labour-only or sub-contracting. We support home-working arrangements for our women in Australia as they live in various locations and sometimes work internationally. We hold regular meetings using Zoom or WhatsApp to keep in touch. 

No Child Labour

This employment practice aligns with this UN sustainable development goal

We do not employ anyone under the age of 18 nor do we have anyone work for free. 

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