Sisters Under One Sky Project
Since we first started rocking out our globetrotter glam artisan jewelry here in Boudhanath, Kathmandu, Nepal, Lotus Sky has been all about the business- but more than that, we've been all about using business as a way to create opportunities for women who want access to skills, the global marketplace, economic independence, and a place to recognize, cultivate, and proclaim their own creativity.
When Lotus Sky first began as a boutique and fabrication studio here in Kathmandu back in 2012, our training programs were exclusively geared toward Tibetan refugee women interested in gaining business experience or in learning jewelry fabrication. Soon, however, we expanded to bring on young Himalayan women from the Tibet/Nepal border who had just completed their grade 10 education at a nearby sponsored boarding school and faced either forced marriage or return to their native village unless they were able to fund a "gap year" and gain acceptance into a "plus 2," grade 11 and 12 program.
These girls were on fire, interested in business, and hungry to gain skills- both in the creative design aspects of Lotus Sky, as well as "the books." They all ultimately ended up in business programs here in Kathmandu, inspiring us to recognize that while Tibetan refugee women had specific needs and talents, it was not necessary to the mission of Lotus Sky that we limit our reach only to Tibetan women.
Sarah with Sangye, one of the first "gap year" students. Sangye has now been with Lotus Sky for nearly 3 years and is getting ready to start her earning Bachelor of Business Administration!
The crocheted glass bead slide on bracelets caught on like wildfire. Seed beads are already a huge part of Nepali jewelry culture and women all over Nepal have been crocheting similar bracelets for centuries. When local women saw the Lotus Sky women creating these bracelets, they not only wanted to get some for themselves, their mothers, and their sisters, but they also wanted to learn how to create Lotus Sky slide on bracelets!
Thus began the Lotus Sky Sisters Under One Sky program. Not excluding women from any region or background, the Sisters Under One Sky program unites women here in Nepal with the global sisterhood of women who wear Lotus Sky bracelets all over the world!
Women interested in economic independence, skills building, jewelry design, personal growth, or all of the above can sign up for one our free month long training programs to learn the ins and outs of patterning, measuring, crocheting, and stitching from start to finish!
Upon completion of the Sisters Under One Sky program, women have the opportunity to participate in an evaluation and join the Lotus Sky team, although this is not mandatory. We now have a wait list of over 50 women eager to become "Sisters Under One Sky," two training centers in Kathmandu, and a truly inspired, vibrant team of women crocheting Lotus Sky bracelets!