New Social Enterprise Initiative “Bordamos Juntos”
PSYDEH’s fieldwork focuses in part on empowering indigenous women to be the leaders and businesswomen they are. One mechanism for achieving this objective is our forthcoming second social enterprise-oriented initiative we call “Bordamos Juntos” (Embroider Together).
What is Bordamos Juntos?
We engage approximately 40 indigenous women leader artisans to link long-term community development strategies from our scalable model to short-term economic security for women co-leading our work. Why? Women partners demand this activity. How? PSYDEH will invest in the women partners’ main income stream – the sale of artisan goods. We will then sell these pieces via our network of global and national friends and in collaboration with the Mexico City group Ayuda Mutua CDMX, who helps us to produce initiative promotional materials and act as an e-commerce platform host we need to sell 100% of the items. This work has already begun when recently hosting Ayuda Mutua filmmakers in the field.
How does this address local problems?
We know that if rural indigenous women lack economic resources (and they do especially now during the pandemic), they lack the ability to effectively use their freedom to associate, among many other rights. They struggle to do for themselves, often controlled by men with the purse strings. They lack the cachet for demonstrating to men and the government their problem-solving role. Our own recent survey of indigenous women found of strong-majority makes less than MXN $1000 per month, and matters have only worsened since the onset of the pandemic. There is no industry and thus no dignified-waged work. This survey also tells us that women value the opportunity to learn while earning money and combating gender inequality through culturally-expressive artisanal work. As an Otomí woman states,
“…[PSYDEH] teach[es] us how to be independent women. And this helps us to move away a little bit from male chauvinism in this community. They teach us to be better women entrepreneurs and to have greater self-esteem.”
Bordamos Juntos empowers indigenous women because it puts money in their pockets, MXN $1000 for each piece with all net profit going back into a fund that underwrites more social enterprise initiatives like this one. How do we know this will work? This is not our first go-around. We succeeded in round one in early-2020.