Many women at Basha had very minimal education as children. Some were fending for themselves on the streets. Some were from poor families who weren’t able to send them to school. Some were trafficked into brothels or risky jobs at a very young age. Some were married by the time they reached their early teen years.
Before joining Basha as employees, women have a chance for literacy and training on a range of topics. But we know learning is a lifetime process. Getting a job at Basha shouldn’t be the end of education; it should be the beginning. So we provide classes five days per week for 45 minutes. Women continue to work on reading and writing their native language. They learn basic English so they can communicate with visitors. They learn how to resolve conflicts in a healthy way. They learn how to nurture and encourage their children and discipline them more effectively. They learn to think through their values and how they make decisions.
Not all women value this opportunity. Learning is hard work for them and they need encouragement to engage. Some are focused on their work and don’t want to step away from it. But Jesmine today told guests how much she has learned and what great benefits, like education on a myriad of topics, she receives. Kajol was explaining last week how she has learned so much that now she knows how to best support and educate her son, although her husband doesn’t understand and believe myths because he hasn’t had the same training.
Their words are encouraging, but we don’t need their words of affirmation to know that these daily classes are a worthy investment. We can look at their faces, see the newfound confidence, see them begin to make better decisions, and we recognize its importance. And you have one more thing to be proud of when you buy a Basha product… you are giving the artisan a livelihood and an opportunity at education as well.
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
“The mind once enlightened cannot again become dark.”
-Thomas Paie, A Letter Address to the Abbe Raynal on the Affairs of North America