GoodWeave USA

GoodWeave's mission is to end exploitative child labor in the carpet industry and to offer educational opportunities to children in weaving communities. The GoodWeave label is your best assurance that no child labor was used in the manufacture of a rug. The organization was founded on this premise: If enough people demand certified child-labor-free rugs, manufacturers will only employ adult artisans and the exploitation of children in the industry will end.
Dec 21, 2011

Two More Reasons to Celebrate

Kulmon
Kulmon

Dear GlobalGivers,

This is a season of celebration - some of us are observing Hanukkah, while others are preparing for Christmas and the New Year. Here at GoodWeave we are thinking of another kind of occasion - a birthday! Let me explain.

Thanks to you, Kulmon is getting food, clothing, shelter, counseling and an education. But there’s one thing he doesn’t have: a birthday. Like most of the kids we rescue, Kulmon doesn’t know exactly when he was born.

Before he was rescued by GoodWeave in March 2010, Kulmon had been ruthlessly trafficked between carpet factories in Nepal and India, his childhood consumed by long, crippling hours at the looms.Today, Kulmon is studying at GoodWeave’s Hamro Ghar (“Our Home”), the first stop for rescued kids on their way to a better life.

In October of this year, two of my colleagues had the privilege of meeting Kulmon. They remember his smile as he described the first time he ever celebrated his birthday: “We put colored paper in balloons and burst them so that there is confetti everywhere.”

On January 1, 2012 - a symbolic date of starting anew - GoodWeave will throw its annual "(un)common birthday" party for all our beneficiaries. You've already had a hand in making their wishes come true, but now you can also be there when they blow out the candles. Click here to send an electronic card that will be presented to the kids at the upcoming festivities: http://www.goodweave.org/e-card

And finally, we have one more reason to celebrate this holiday time. Last week, Google.org joined you in the fight against human trafficking and child servitude. They selected GoodWeave to receive a grant as part of their first-ever dedication of funds to end modern-day slavery. We've attached the press release with more of the details.

With wishes of peace and freedom for 2012,
Nina Smith

Cutting the Cake (2009)
Cutting the Cake (2009)

Links:

Nov 8, 2011

Reaching for the STARS and a special message from Kathmandu

A team effort...
A team effort...

Dear GlobalGivers,

We are proud to share some exciting news - our Nepal program has received the 2011 STARS Impact Award for children’s protection in Asia! The coveted prize, sponsored by the UK-based STARS Foundation, recognizes organizations that achieve excellence in the provision of services to disadvantaged children and demonstrate effective management practices.

As investors in this project, our victories are your victories, so we hope you will celebrate with us.

And we have another message from Nepal - this one directly from the beneficiaries. During his recent visit to our Kathmandu center for rescued "carpet kids", our colleague Scott Welker took two photographs that, taken together, are so touching.

The first picture is a group of our kids huddled around a table working on a project. The second is the result of their team effort - two colorful handwritten papers that simply say: "Thank You." They made these for you - the individuals around the world who have been touched by their plight and made contributions to their future.

With gratitude,

Rebecca Shaloff

...to say "thank you."
...to say "thank you."

Links:

Sep 28, 2011

Breaking the Education Barrier

Raj, former child weaver turned teacher
Raj, former child weaver turned teacher

As the kids in our lives go back to school this month, we at GoodWeave can’t help but think about the children in Asia who won’t – including some 250,000 boys and girls weaving a rug as you read this.

Education can decide a child’s future – yet many kids in the weaving communities where we operate have no such choice. Government-run schools in Nepal and India are often inaccessible, contributing to a 40 percent illiteracy rate. Many parents face hard choices between having their children walk miles to attend a poor-quality school, or putting them to work making bricks, glass or rugs, which offers the lure of a more immediate pay-off for the family.

With your support, this project breaks down the barriers to education, in turn breaking the vicious cycle of poverty that entraps generations of families. “Education is the basic element of life,” said Raj Kumari, a rescued child weaver. “Ten years ago I was weaving carpets in a dark room, but today I am a teacher, bringing the light of education to kids who suffered like me.” Rescued by GoodWeave in 1997 at age 11, today Raj is a teacher and caretaker at Hamro Ghar (our home), GoodWeave’s rehabilitation center in Nepal. 

Though Raj’s path is extraordinary, it is not unusual. Many children come to Hamro Ghar having little formal education and many strikes against them in life, but with support from GoodWeave and GlobalGiving, they often leap-frog through our accelerated learning program and go on to higher education or vocational programs. Given their drive to succeed and use the “golden chance” given them, they often perform just as well if not better on standardized tests, according to Ganga Battharai, Hamro Ghar’s residential social worker and counselor.

“Many of the ‘carpet kids’ have had devastating childhoods, enduring beatings, neglect, sexual abuse, the loss of parental figures and other forms of trauma,“ said Ganga. “These children transform during their stay at Hamro Ghar in so many ways. They develop a positive outlook on their future and their own self-worth. They learn their legal rights and acquire life skills like negotiating and critical thinking. Many develop talent in sports, academics and other activities they didn’t know they had.”

Hamro Ghar (and Bal Vikas Ashram, its equivalent in India) sets the children up for success with a stable, supportive environment, providing nutritious meals, comfortable lodging, individualized counseling and education, and plenty of recreational opportunities. Yet this is just one of many forms of educational support we provide. In addition to rescued child weavers, GoodWeave serves at-risk kids and children of adult artisans with programs to include early childhood education, residential-based schooling, scholarships for top private schools and vocational training. Since GoodWeave’s founding in 1994, a total of 10,600 have received the life-changing gift of education.
 
No matter what road a child chooses with GoodWeave and GlobalGiving at their side, these educational opportunities offer a better life not only for the child but also for future generations. “I am providing my daughter a good education so that she would not be a child laborer like me. I cannot imagine having another child unless I can afford his or her education,” said Raj, who is now married with a six-year-old girl. “I didn’t know how important education was until I had it.”

Links:

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