What do you get when you add textile wastage, environment protection and women empowerment? Why, Project Katran of course. The project, started by the social entrepreneurs by Enactus College of Vocational Sudies, aims to bring livelihood and independence to women in slums and other backward areas of Delhi.

The idea is simple: they take the clothes generally thrown away, recycle them and have women entrepreneurs turn them into beautiful bags. The journey to the project being functional wasn’t without its challenges. It took an entire semester of research to set up and finally run the project. Today, they have two centers and sixteen women being trained to make the product.

The project takes care of all minute details: trends in the markets, the skill level of the women and the quality of the cloth being used. Sales, however, turned out to be an issue. Divyansh Dua, President of Enactus CVS, explains, “After the ladies started making the bags, we faced a problem in selling them as the market for up-cycled products is limited. We tapped a section of the market by targeting college students by putting up stalls at fests and are now looking for sustainable solutions.” One such solution is a dedicated Facebook page by the name of Katran.

Collaborations with Green the Gap and WWF are also on the cards, members of the society explained. Though only a year into existence, this chapter of Enactus has achieved considerably and has big plans for the future which include opening more centers all over Delhi, impacting at least a thousand people and diversifying into other products like folders, jewellery etc.

(This is a guest post written for DU Beat)


Poorvi Pandey