Leadership through courage, compassion and community.

Unlocking economic empowerment for women of the Thar Desert


Like many other women living in the rural desert in India, Pihu has a full house. She is a 33-year-old woman who lives in the Thar Desert of Rajasthan, India with her husband, her two children, and her in-laws. Ever since she was a young girl, she has been passionate about sewing. You can imagine her delight when she found herself with a mother-in-law who shared the same passion.

In 2011, Pihu joined the Thar Artisan Collective, where other women in her village were involved, learning handicraft skills, financial literacy, and how to support one another. It soon became apparent that sewing was not the only strength that Pihu possessed. She showed leadership skills and eventually was placed on the management team for TAC.

Before getting involved, she knew only how to stitch by machine. However, with training, she was able to learn traditional hand stitching as well. She will tell you, it is not her favorite thing to do. But with those learned skills, combined with her natural leadership ability, she now trains and guides other women, who look up to her as a leader.

Pihu’s husband is a farmer and is also working as a driver. With her income from TAC, she now shares in the family’s financial responsibilities, and decisions. She can invest in her own development, and takes care of all educational expenses for her children, lightening the load for her husband. She has much gratitude for her husband and her in-law’s support in her life, for without them her life would not be possible.

For Pihu, joining a women’s group helped unlock her potential, so she can live and lead her own life.

Bring a little bit of the magic of Pihu into your own home by shopping the WomenServe shop, showcasing artisan goods made by the hands of the women of the Thar desert.