Our work spans 3 decades, 25 states and thousands of craftspeople each year. Partner with us, giving us the opportunity to reach out to many more.

Our History with Corporations

Using empathy as our strongest tool, we have now spread to 25 states with support from corporations, international organisations and individuals.

Today, our list of office bearers, led by Dastkar’s Chairperson – Ms. Laila Tyabji, includes a distinguished group of professionals from diverse sectors like design, craft-research, education, finance, social work, and marketing. We have gained not only financial support, but also expertise that has helped expand Dastkar’s portfolio of activities for the crafts sector of India.

Case Study – Impact Assessment & Strategy Formation

Situated in Southern Rajasthan, an NGO working for the development of the local deprived tribal communities, had availed numerous governmental schemes ranging from education & health for women and children to skill training.

Despite training the villagers under numerous schemes, the NGO did not have a clear direction and was unable to create an impact.

While they had recognized that developing the skills of the local hand-block printers & almost 300 traditional bandhini craftswomen was key to development and sustainable livelihoods, the craftspeople were still unable to earn a livelihood.

Without clear objectives or a market plan, the organization spent all its energy and resources in getting products designed and made, but did not know what to make or where to market them.

The NGO approached Dastkar in 2011 to help them untangle the threads of confusion. After a needs assessment visit & analysis, Dastkar recognized the great potential of the local crafts people and developed a comprehensive strategy plan and a focused path forward. The plan included detailed steps on how to recognize and build upon the strong craft skill of the region, what products and designs needed to be made, what ancillary skills the NGO needed to develop. Dastkar provided linkages to appropriate raw materials and credit, and also laid down guidelines on how this NGO could market and create linkages for the products developed by the artisans.

The brand continues to participate in Dastkar Bazaars and other exhibitions across India, getting mentoring and new design development when needed. With this focused development and the profits of the sales going directly to the 200+ artisans, the craftspeople are now confident and self-reliant. They are able to educate their children and are now looking to innovate upon their existing dyeing and printing processes and make them more sustainable.

Case Study – Project Evaluation & Implementing Effective Craft Intervention

In 1991, when a project initiated by a corporation to create income generation alternatives for tribal women in Karnataka failed to support the women due to mismanagement, Dastkar was asked to step in and intervene.

Recognizing that a distinctive design range using the embroidery skillsets and local materials already existing in the tribal community was the key to development, Dastkar provided design, product development, marketing and skill training to the talented craftswomen, including a Project Coordinator in the initial years. Soon, the craft centre started producing exquisite garments, soft furnishings and accessories based on the women’s traditional embroidery.

The number of women benefiting from the center have increased from 25 to 500 craftswomen and 30 craftsmen, and average earnings have increased from Rs. 10 a day to Rs. 1,500/- to Rs.2,000/- per month which is inclusive of subsidized ration, Bonus, provident fund etc.

Today, the craft centre is an economically sustainable project. Their unique range of accessories and soft furnishings find an enthusiastic retail and wholesale demand in both the domestic and international market. Most importantly, the women themselves are decision makers and part of the production and marketing management.

Case Study – Developing & Implementing a CSR Strategy

Since 2009, the CSR branch of a renowned international chain of Hotels has funded Dastkar to help give intensive design input, capacity building guidance, product development, marketing opportunities, training and ground support to 19 groups of small grassroots handloom & handicraft producers from 10 Indian states. In December 2012, the Foundation renewed this 3 year long partnership with Dastkar for another year to continue crafting livelihoods and to reach out to more artisans and craft communities.

The CSR strategy was developed over the course of the partnership, incorporating design & product development workshops, Entrepreneurship Development Trainings, a direct marketing platform through bazaars & exhibitions, and designing & printing Branding & Promotional material for craft groups. Products and visuals from the beneficiary craftspeople were also developed for use as giveaways by the hotel chain, giving visibility to both the Project and the hotels.

The Project and this integrated approach to development has resulted in benefitting over 2500 craft families all over India.

An Opportunity – Corporate Social Responsibility with Dastkar

We invite the business community to champion our cause and the cause of craftsmanship and sustainable livelihoods. Help us grow and implement, innovate and deepen our impact, share your time and ideas. Enable craftspeople of all ages, areas and expertise get the opportunities they deserve.

Choose to support an existing program or take our interventions to a new location – partnering with Dastkar is giving back to India – it will undoubtedly lead to impact and growth.

You Can:

  • Support any of our current programmes and help us impact on scale.
  • Utilize a combination of our projects to create a customized initiative for your organization in a location of your choice.
  • Partner with Dastkar, to set up systematic research, monitoring and evaluation systems for any of your existing projects.
  • As an industry expert, become our Knowledge Partner to share your expertise and technical know-how and provide financial assistance.

Dastkar follows an immersive model of project implementation, emphasizing on the empowerment of and sustainable livelihoods of not only the individual artisan, but their families, craft businesses and the entire craft community. This inherent quality of empathy and in-depth understanding of the importance of crafts to India’s socio-economic well-being ensures that that your contributions are maximized to impact more lives.

Write to us at for more details. We would appreciate the opportunity to meet & work with you.