Empower Shipibo women through creative economy

by Alianza Arkana
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Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
Empower Shipibo women through creative economy
project coordinator being interviewed
project coordinator being interviewed

We are super excited to communicate very fresh news!

Recently our collective has suffered some exciting changes. Since 3 months ago a very talented Shipibo young woman has been coordinating and leading the project!

She has inherited from her grandmother her Shipibo name which means Yellow Guacamayo: symbol of hope, solidarity and good energy. Feeling proud of her personal and professional growth, she is a girl with many ambitions in life and is looking forward to see the Kené Néte brand growing successfully, supporting and inspiring other Shipibo girls whom may have the same dream of gain economic independence through Shipibo-Konibo art, straighten and revaluing our culture through ethical fashion. 

 

Our main activities during the last months were:

 

Focus on the production: 

First we were working on the creative concept of the collection with the goal of producing unique pieces of greater value and other pieces of more massive production that can be sold for a lower price. Doing it in this way we ensure that we will have products for a more diverse clientele.

 

Collaborative Creation together of a group of artisan mothers:

These shipibo mothers who normally only create the common traditional textiles have now had the opportunity to collaborate with us and create ethnic fashion by embroidering the pieces we design and produce. This practice has enriched us in many ways, not only because it is a powerfull intergenerational exchange where we can grow and learn a lot from each other, but also because they have also been financially compensated for each piece they embroider, generating income for a greater number of Shipibo families.

 

Showrooms and Events:

During this months we have been participating in various local showrooms and festivals, for example in the Shipi Fest - a Music and Art Festival organized by a Shipibo Youth Collective, which has allowed us to sell directly our products as well as make our brand more visible by forging alliances with local businesses.

 

Marketing strategy:

With the support of some volunteers we are developing a new marketing strategy to position the Kené Néte brand solidly in the Pucallpa’s market.

Now we have more presence in our social media. See our work at:

facebook.com/kenenete.shipibofemalecollective

instagram.com/kenenete/

 

Finally, we want to make a request for solidarity expressing that our goal is to be, in less than 2 years, a solid, recognized and self-sustaining brand for young Shipibo. We would be very grateful if you can be part of this dream by supporting our initiative. Thank you *

At the Shipi-Festi - Music & Art Festival
At the Shipi-Festi - Music & Art Festival
Kene Nete Showroom
Kene Nete Showroom
Bio-Feria Ucayalina
Bio-Feria Ucayalina
Kene Nete Showroom
Kene Nete Showroom

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Tags from reused paper, achiote, leaves and cotton
Tags from reused paper, achiote, leaves and cotton

      Pandemic hit us hard in Peru. It's been a real challenge and we had to learn how to survive while the world was literally ending. Our cultural knowledge revealed to be our most valuable ally: our plants, our traditional medicine, our ancestors, our environment, our art and our way of living reassured us and showed the rest of the world how important indigenous peoples are. 

   All eyes are now looking to the Amazon rainforest since saving this environment can be the only hope for saving the rest of the planet. But we cannot save the Earth without protecting the culture of people who know how to live respecting nature, people who are one with nature: those are the indigenous.

  In this new approach of Kené Neté, after the pandemic, we set down and spoke (a lot), we reflected, we swam in the river, we drank matecitos (herbal infusion), we walked all over town, we collected herbs, we chewed coca leaves, we went through our old creations, we allowed ourselves to sleep and dream and we asked what do we, as indigenous peoples in general need, what do Shipibo people need and what does the world need. 

   We came up with the answer that what we are all eager for is healing. People from different parts of the globe come to Pucallpa looking for healing and Shipibo people provide that through traditional medicine, a process that is bonded to art ­— in amerindian societies health and art are pieces of a same indissociable net — and we are also looking to heal ourselves, from all our losses to Covid-19, from all the poverty it left behind, from all the pain it caused. 

   We have a lot to share. Colors, plants, wisdom, dreams, art. But we hope we can make a decent living out of it, and by that, we can heal people from all over the world. Because what Shipibo people do is healing art: it is a magical process that touches hearts and spreads hope. 

   Our new products are coming, aligned with this healing speech. Everything in Kené Néte is as greener as possible, as sustainable as possible, as natural as possible. And if we are looking to heal, we need to have the means to sustain ourselves too.

   So in this first moment of our new phase we need your help to provide our 3 indigenous women staff a fair payment: one Quechua, who is already a professional and two Shipibo, who are in university right now. Our goal is to progressively enhance staff payment, make Kené Néte grow and later generate more jobs, which are so much needed in Peru. 

   The production will happen anyway (we have a small funding for materials, manufacturing, workshops, etc) but we need human resources to make the initiative long-term sustainable. 

   Description of the pictures attached:

  • Tags we made from reused paper, achiote (Bixa orellana) natural paint, leaves from our garden and raw cotton.
  • Achiote paint and our logo stamp
  • Lucía (Quechua) and Eva (Shipibo) working on the tags
  • Lucía (Quechua) and Eva (Shipibo) working on planning, goals, strategies.
achiote paint and logo stamp
achiote paint and logo stamp
Lucia Quechua and Eva Shipibo working on the tags
Lucia Quechua and Eva Shipibo working on the tags
Lucia Quechua and Eva Shipibo working on planning
Lucia Quechua and Eva Shipibo working on planning
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Over the last months of 2021, we were able to achieve some important goals towards the reactivation of our collective.

We collaborated with other local brands in putting together a fashion show during the Asalto Cultural festival, on its first edition since the beginning of the pandemic. With the aim of promoting the consumption of local products and produce, each outfit was conceptualized on the basis of a distinctively Amazonian fruit or vegetable: it’s specific taste, color, smell or texture. Co-organizing this event was a very important source of experience for us.

We also took part in an independent Christmas fair in Lima, where we managed to showcase and sell some of the new accessories and clothing pieces we worked on over the last months of the year. This was an amazing opportunity to make our products known amongst young, fashionable people who also take an interest in knowing how and where what they wear is made.

After a well deserved rest, we are starting 2022, hopefully the year the pandemic is over, with much energy and thrilled to start working towards bigger goals. For that, the first step is to renew and give maintenance to our equipment, which has been worn and torn, especially over the intense last months of work.

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Today, though still facing the difficulties brought by the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic, and approaching what seems to be a third wave for Peru, we are starting to work on the plan we elaborated as our guide to reactivate and keep working up until the end of 2021. Though there are some supplies and materials that are impossible to acquire in Ucayali, we are innovating and working with what we have and can get.

As Kene Nete, a collective of Shipibo-konibo artisans, our main goal as Kene Nete is to have a finished mini collection by the 13th of October, anniversary of the capital of Ucayali, Pucallpa. We plan to be able to show around 10 different outfits, comprised of embroidered, hand painted and screen printed garments, as well as a diverse accessories, all featuring traditional and current interpretations of our ancestral designs: kené. Given the conditions, we hope to showcase this collection in a fashion show as part of the celebrations of the city’s anniversary.

We currently are building local connections with independent fairs, as well online resources to be able to sell this collection not only in Pucallpa, but also in different cities in Peru and the world. As soon as we have enough funding, we also plan to engage in formative workshops to better our sewing, dyeing, screen printing and embroidering abilities. This will allow us not only to continue working despite the setbacks we have been facing, but also to better our work, so that we can continue to grow and thus benefit more and more Shipibo youths and their families though the promotion of sustainable fashion and our culture.

Recently, we were invited by the Municipality of Coronel Portillo to participate in the International Folk Art Market in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where our work will be showcased among the production of other indigenous artisans and artists of the province. We have already turned in our best pieces to the office in charge, and are eagerly waiting for upcoming news and results of our presence there.

Hopefully we will soon be able to show all of our supporters the results of our hard work.

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Selling products
Selling products

 

Faced with the difficult situation of the COVID 19 pandemic, our Kene Nete collective paralyzed their activities during the 2020 and the first months of the year 2021. We were mainly affected by the restrictions imposed by the government and also because many of the members of our collective and their families suffered from Covid.

With trade restricted for long periods, it was difficult for us to acquire supplies such as textiles, yarns, buttons, etc. In addition, the paralysis of tourist activity left us without a market where we could offer our products. For this reason, we were forced to stop the production and elaboration of garments. For us, young Shipibo-Konibo artists, it is a challenge to position ourselves in the fashion industry with identity.

However, we are adopting to the new normality and little by little, new opportunities are opening up to us. We received an invitation from the Shipibo Digital TV program "Non Kaya" to do a live fashion show of our collection and use the social media broadcast to launch the pre-sale of the garments we made before the pandemic. Many Shipibo Konibo models wore our clothes and we had a great acceptance from the public who tuned in.

Because we didn't sell all our garments, we did a photo shoot and through our social networks we continued with the sales. In addition, we participated in the clothing sales fair "Inoa Xatan Fashion", offering our products along with other fashion initiatives in our region.

This new year we have all the energy to continue showing you our work and our bet, to make sustainable fashion with that identity that we inherited from our Shipibo Konibo culture!

 

Jatibi jakon!

Fashion Show
Fashion Show
models
models
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Organization Information

Alianza Arkana

Location: Yarinacocha, Ucayali - Peru
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Development Team
Yarinacocha, Ucayali Peru
$1,629 raised of $18,000 goal
 
58 donations
$16,371 to go
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