ISLAMABAD  – A training workshop for rural craftpersons with expertise in various craft fields concluded here on Thursday at National Institute of Folk and Traditional Heritage, Lok Virsa.

The training was a part of a series of master artisan training workshops for providing capacity building to 768 marginalized craft persons/artisans, mainly from rural districts with poor lower income groups.

Artisans participating in the current workshop included Farhat Bibi in lacquer art from D.I. Khan, Asmat Bibi in embroidery from D.I. Khan, Zahid Riaz in wax printing from Peshawar, Nazish Bibi in mirror work from Multan, Abdul Waheed in pottery from Taxila, Humera Bibi in Gota Kinari from Multan, Saleem Bukhari in embroidery from Multan, Muhammad Ramazan in Khussa (shoe) making from Kamalia, Imdad Ali in block printing from Hyderabad, Nigar Anees in embroidery from Karachi, Muhammad Younas in Ajrak block printing from Hala, Sobia Abid and Zubaida Bibi in crochet work from Sargodha, Sadaf Khalid in Rilli work from Multan, Shabana in applique work from Rawalpindi, Kaneez Fatima and Rubina Matin in embroidery from Balochistan and others.

These workshops focus on GALS (Gender Action Learning System), group management, skill development/enhancement, colour scheming, product design and development, quality control, pricing, raw material purchasing, marketing as well as economic rights of home based/ informal workers, health, for sustainable improvement in their earnings, said an official of Lok Virsa.

The participants of these workshops are home-based workers living in far-flung deprived areas, with no or limited linkage with big markets to sell their products, he informed.

Talking to this news agency, he said the important aspect of these trainings is to provide exposure to the skilled artisans in value chain development and marketing practices through hands-on experience in the exhibition/marketing facility at Lok Virsa.

He informed that the master artisan received Rs. 5,000 as honorarium for training five fellow crafts persons and which was disseminated on successful completion of the training during the marketing exposure/exhibition at provincial level such as craft, industrial and Mela exhibitions by chambers of commerce.

The project provided capacity building for marginalized craft persons hailing from rural districts and lower income groups, the official said.

He said these craft persons are mostly home-based workers living in far flung deprived areas, with no or limited linkage with big markets to sell their products who are being exploited by the middleman for sale of their products.