Celebrating entrepreneurs who create social, environmental and economic values
Social Entrepreneur: Sabita Maharjan
Phone No: 9841649035
Sabita started Kirtipur Hosiery Industries with the aim of women empowerment:
• She provides training to the Kirtipur women in the art of knitting and offers these women a source of income.
• Empowers women to make a significant contribution towards the family economically.
• Encourages women (many victims of family violence) to come together for support.
• House wives can spend their free time learning a new skill and generate income.
• Women leaders are rare and this venture serves as a model for other women to stand up and compete in the marketplace.
MODEL FOR SUSTAINABILITY
Sabita has been impacting women through the cooperative that she started along with Kirtipur Hosiery. She is also an agent at Kalanki Knitwear to showcase her items. She has two salary based workers and others are based on a large commission (90%). The cooperative which is only for women currently has approx 375 members with 130 shareholders. The members are educated on the benefits of saving and the legal issues involved. Sabita sustains her venture through:
Sales: Individuals or businesses can place an order and she and her employees then knit the required items and number.
Co-op started by 60 women with the investment of Rs. 100/ month. Membership cost – Rs. 100 (Passbook + Minimum cost per month).
Share holders – Rs. 1000 (During someone’s demise or withdrawal, share sold or transferred to another person) and 10% dividend from the cooperative
Adult literacy classes conducted by Sabita – Rs. 1,000/ 2 hrs
Agent of change for victims of domestic violence: As a victim of domestic violence herself, Sabita left her drug-addicted husband and started her knitting industry with four women fifteen years ago. She gives preference to women who have gone through a lot in her life, like herself.
Co-op that unites the women: The Co-op has 375 members and 130 shareholders.
Adult literacy trainings: Received further training from the municipality and has trained 30 women over 3 years raising awareness about health and environment. Some of the students are working with her. Overall, she has impacted women by providing them with employment as well as making them financially independent.
Cleaning Campaigns: Once a month, Sabita and her group collects plastics from her locality while on the cleaning campaign. She makes decoration baskets, dolls using recycle plastics.
No-waste: The team uses wool, cotton and recycled silk wool as its raw material for the knitting purpose. The waste wool produced is used in making dolls, pillows, etc (nothing goes to waste).
THE VENTURE’S POTENTIAL FOR GROWTH, SCALABILITY AND REPLICABILITY
Growth: Sabita’s venture has grown to support 73 workers. 22 of them work directly at the industry while the remaining 51 work in their homes.
Scalability: Plans to increase the number of orders and businesses that buy from Kirtipur Hosiery Industries.
Replicability: High potential to be replicated to support marginalized groups. Minimum work space needed, and women can also work at home. Training is available, and no machinery required hence minimum investment.