Women learning from woman on bamboocraft techniques

As resilient as the native material she uses to create fine handicrafts Moring Aberion, owner of a small enterprise that bears her name, never limits her reach for markets and partners. In fact, she challenges the limits of her capacity to share skills as well as her knowledge of the material and its many use.

The women producers in the remote mountain region of Nepal have been coming up with a variety of traditional souvenir products for tourists. Little did they know that the abundantly-growing bamboo in their mountains could be used to produce finely-woven bamboo products such as hats, houseware items, nested trays and bags that appeal to the export market. Until they were introduced to women in the Cordillera region of the Philippines that they learned of new possibilities to make more products of the perennial bamboo.

The Nepalese women indicated the need to acquire technical skills as well as experience in developing business on bamboocraft. They showed interest in the Philippines as source of technology and business experience. Aberion Bamboocraft Enterprise, one of the enterprises that the WINNER Project supports in gaining access to markets, came out as the best choice for technology transfer cum consultancy to serve the needs of the Nepalese women.

Moring Aberion (owner of Aberion Bamboocraft Enterprise) at first did not entertain the thought of sharing her skills and experience through consultancy for a group so far away from her place of operation. Several weeks after the first contact with Moring, a follow-up call from the coordinator of the WEAN (Women Entrepreneurs Association of Nepal) announced that two of its members would come to Manila to meet with Moring to open discussions on the terms of engagement.

Overwhelmed by the prospects of working for one month in a remote village up on the slopes of the Himalayas, to train 28 women from the communities, Moring sought a briefing from the WINNER office on what to expect in Nepal as well as what was expected of her. With all her apprehensions and doubts clarified, she finally agreed to take on this first-ever consultancy work.

More than the technical aspects of bamboo processing and weaving, Moring brought to Dhankuta, Nepal her business experience with the view to sharing with the trainees insights on dealing with buyers from abroad.

“I am thankful to WINNER and the Women Entrepreneurs Association of Nepal for having given me the chance to share my experience with the mountain women in Nepal. This was the first time for me to travel to another country. It was an enriching experience. Certainly, we can collaborate when the time comes for us to fill a huge volume that not one producer alone can meet,” she said.

The Nepalese training coordinator, Shyam Shrestha, wrote: “Our women have started to formally go into business. Four have registered theirs and are now marketing their products to buyers in Kathmandu. I would like you to know that your training these women is very much appreciated.”

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