Enhancing Crafts Entrepreneurship in Imereti Region

The project goal was to enhance entrepreneurship skills amongst the Crafts makers in Imereti Region, with the aim to improve their living conditions, raise their social status and promote entrepreneurship as an economic engine for their region. The project implied enhancing craft entrepreneurship through building makers’ capacity in product development and business skills. It made stress on training and workshops, new product line creation, their creation of new marketing opportunities, and share of international experience. Boosting of business activities is supposed to draw more attention to crafts, as to the sector with high employment opportunities, which in turn is believed to contribute to poverty reduction, empowerment of rural communities, women and young people, promote equal rights,s and the development of a strong democratic society and from the other hand to safeguard ancient Crafts traditions turning them into a profitable business.

The particular project had two main directions

  • Capacity Building - Product Development – were mainly focus on the creation of new designs and functional groups for crafts products (in cooperation with US consultant) - Business skills Development – were mainly emphasize other aspects across the value chain from production to distribution and marketing.
  •  Marketing enhancement activities. 70 craft makers from the Imereti region received hands-on practical consultations on how to develop their production and boost their business. Product development workshops helped to diversify their products in terms of mixed technologies, materials, new functions,s, and designs, whereas the business skills acquired have helped them with other components across the value chain.

The impact of the project can be clearly seen in the improved product quality and sales during the market testing activities beyond the project. Established links with Imereti Tourist Destinations helped to diversify and create new marketing spots for local products. Boosting of business activities is supposed to draw more attention to crafts, as to the sector with high employment possibilities, which in turn is believed to contribute to poverty reduction, empowerment of rural communities, women and young people, promote equal right and the development of a strong democratic society. The project is funded by the Democracy Commission Small Grants Program, by the US Embassy in Georgia.

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