Satish Kumar Dhiman started his woodwork business in 1999. He used to work for a toy woodcraft factory in Saharanpur, North India until 1999. In the toy woodcraft factory, Satish learned the detailed craft of working with joint wood and eventually went on to manage the workshop.
When the toy factory closed, Satish was forced to look for alternative work. Using the skills he learned in the factory, Satish decided to be self-employed and set out to provide livelihood to his fellow workers. He collected a team of skilled artisans and set up his woodwork shop. His specialty was working with joint wood, using different types of wood and creating distinct designs.
However, it did not take long to become heavily in debt. Satish continued taking regular orders from fair-trade companies for several years and he was finally able to pay off his debts. He began to dream about expanding his modest facility to include a storage space for raw material and packaging. Today that dream is a reality. As his business increased, he trained new artisans and provided them with work. He now employs over 30 to 35 artisans and is proud to say that all his old artisan co-workers still work with him.
With regular orders and the impact of fair-trade treatment, Satish was not only able to provide sustained livelihood for his fellow artisans, but also managed to expand his workplace.
Children of artisans working with fair-trade companies receive assistance to continue their education and their families receive free medical check-ups and medicines under welfare projects.
“Fair Trade involves doing everything right” – Satish Kumar Dhiman