Thai Tribal Craft Association
Thai Tribal Crafts works with seven hill tribes living in about fifty isolated villages in the mountains of Northern Thailand.
Thai Tribal Crafts gives hope to many hill tribe people who produce the exquisite needlework, hand embroidery , hand-woven items and basket ware.
There was a danger that many of the traditional handcrafts would die out as the villagers were discovering the so called convenience of buying twentieth century cheap alternatives.
With the assistance of Thai Tribal Craft, (a self help organisation), a marketing outlet has been provided through which the Tribal people can sell their beautiful handcraft.
This has not only provided the northern villagers with a much needed income, but also helped them to gain dignity and a renewed sense of self worth.
Thousands of mountain dwelling people can now provide better nutrition for their families, obtain medical help, and educate their children.
As people world wide are appreciating their skills, the hill tribe people have begun to value their traditional skills and craft.
Their range of skills is extensive.
From the silver work of the Mien and Lawa people, the hand embroideries of the Mien and Hmong people, the Akha’s people unique indigo- dyed cloth and the Karen peoples perfectly hand-woven items.
Approximately sixty percent of the price of each craft item goes to the producer.
The net profit after this is divided amongst the tribal people.
As the tribal people cannot live solely by agriculture anymore – because of land limitations, the handcrafts provide the artisans with a better quality of life and helps them restore and revive their traditional craft work.
Thai Tribal Crafts is a member of International Federation of Alternate Trade.
Photo and text supplied courtesy of Siham Craftlink Pty Ltd