The Year the Earth Stood Still, The Start of the Trunkin’ Story
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They say the greatest heroes are forged in crisis. Amid the human catastrophe unleashed by the pandemic, we have had no greater opportunity to reinvent ourselves into everyday heroes. It is the spirit of #CovidHeroes that inspired the Trunkin’ team to step-up and lend a helping hand to our brothers and sisters practicing one of India’s most time-honored traditions.
As the world struggled with Covid and economies collapsed, one of India’s national treasures struggled for survival. Culturally and economically essential to India’s identity and welfare, rural artisans reached the brink of ruin. Practicing one of India’s most visually opulent crafts, the time-honored tradition of bead artistry and embroidery is handed down through generations.
The commerce around this skilled trade provides a life sustaining income that lifts the artists, their families, and communities. Rich in skill but limited in assets, these crafts people were immediately impacted by the fallout from the global financial meltdown and resulting bankruptcies. With their meager capital tied up in inventory, they desperately needed a new avenue to market their goods.
Here is where Trunkin comes in! Much like the crafts people themselves, the folks at Trunkin stitched together a beautiful mosaic of new e-commerce and wholesale channels to showcase the artists’ handcrafted wares. These endeavors quickly generated a critical financial lifeline for nearly 700 artists and helped fulfill our vision to elevate the quality of life and health in our partner communities. For example:
EYE CAMP: Rural communities across India suffer far more blindness and visual impairments than wealthier urban populations. This is largely due to a lack of access to ophthalmologist services. Believing our artisan partners have a right to sight, the folks at Trunkin’, in partnership with regional hospitals, have developed the EYE CAMP initiative. This is a “boots on the ground” program that brings vision saving eye care to rural communities where its urgently needed.
Our first Eye Camp road-trip was to a community on the outskirts of Delhi. Over the course of the visit, 150 artisans had access to eye care specialists and received state of the art vision testing and treatment. With your support, we aspire to rollout the EYE CAMP program across all our partner communities over the coming months and years.
PROJECT SEHER: Despite keeping spotlessly clean homes, many Indians have no choice but to relieve themselves in the open. This is largely due to the states failure to extend basic sanitation to over 6 MILLION people who have no toilet at home. These conditions pose obvious health and personal safety risks, particularly to women and girls.
Our founder, having visited the village of Mundali, witnessed firsthand the untenable conditions caused by the lack of sanitation facilities. This experience left him in shock and bereft of words but also galvanized his resolve to launch PROJECT SEHER.
Seher, a popular girls name in India, means dawn or early morning, giving our project dual meaning of both bringing light to the lives of women and children, as well as a nod to facilitating a fresh start to their day with safe and private morning ablution space. The objective of this project is to empower communities to build and hygienically maintain sanitation facilities that will lead to healthier and safer communities. The goal is to build 80 toilets across multiple geographies that will accommodate our entire artisan population. Our maiden project is well underway in Mundali, the village that inspired PROJECT SEHER.
Now, this is where YOU come in! With each Trunkin purchase of these intricately crafted goods, you will personally help these rural artists achieve economic stability and bring public services to their communities.
The folks at Trunkin and over 700 artisan partners are deeply grateful for your virtual visit to their gallery. They are confident you will find high quality and unique treasures to compliment homes for years to come.
We invite you to subscribe to our blog and join us on this rewarding journey. As part of the unique Trunkin’ experience, we will be sharing insightful profiles and videos featuring our Artisans and Designers and the impact of the Trunkin’ team. Stay tuned to experience India’s rich cultural traditions and village life presented in this immersive series.
We are an international social enterprise founded in 2020 and based in New Delhi India and New Jersey USA. Our core mission is to help artisans across India survive the economic disruption triggered by the pandemic and climate vulnerabilities while improving conditions of village life. Our unique business model fuels a much-needed revenue stream that directly benefits the artisans and their communities.
Led by a group of seasoned manufacturing and export professionals and in partnership with local artisan communities, Trunkin delivers carefully hand-crafted heirloom quality home décor. In addition, we offer in-house design, customize packaging and labeling services. We combine the economic benefits of the import market with the simplicity of doing business with a local team and domestic fulfillment capabilities.