17th March 2017
Working with fishing communities
The coastal areas of Bangladesh are one of the areas that we work in with the fishing communities. Making Pebble toys can be done anywhere. That’s part of the beauty of it. Remote locations are not a problem for us and we can successfully teach anyone who wants to learn, to knit or crochet and make these toys. As such we are often asked to partner with communities where there is already some livelihood but where there are times of scarcity so that the income from making toys can supplement the families irregular income. And we are happy to do it. Its great when the work that we do also contributes to conservation and climate change mitigation and all other important issues.
It was on this basis that we started to work with the USAID funded ECOFISH programme in partnership with WorldFish and the Department of Fisheries in Bangladesh. The Hilsa fish is the national fish of Bangladesh but it was faced with extinction from over-fishing and particularly from fishing of the young and not giving enough time for the fish to reach maturity in order to conserve the population.
The programme has made a fabulous video explaining about all the problems and issues in fishing Hilsa and detailing the work going on to mitigate these.
Introducing Pebble to the fishing communities
Not surprisingly there was lots of interest from the women in the communities when we approached them with the option of making Pebble toys. It’s always so rewarding when the women are so eager to learn and enthusiastic to get started.
Image: women in Barisal putting their hands up to say they want to learn how to make Pebble toys
You can see the Pebble toys being made in the video from the Ecofish programme as well. You can see that this is a training session because they are familiar Pebble designs but made in practice yarn which is different colours from the production colours.
Image: women learning how to make Pebble toys
Image: it’s a really beautiful part of Bangladesh
Image: one of the women has been selected as a supervisor and is learning how to keep the records