Rangsutra links rural artisans to global markets, thereby providing equitable jobs while enabling economic stability and sustainable livelihoods. Rangsutra has a significant opportunity for growth and scaling its impact1, as it has begun to do in Barmer. To support this scaling, Global Social Benefit Fellows from the Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship developed a socioeconomic impact assessment tool to measure Rangsutra’s impact on artisan employees. Fellows field-tested and refined the impact assessment tool. The fellows recommend Rangsutra continue to develop its capacity to assess its social impact assessment on artisans and their families. In doing so, the enterprise can enhance its reputation and attract interest from investors and other stakeholders to help it grow and scale.
Fellows used this impact assessment tool to collect baseline data in Barmer, where Rangsutra has recently launched a new venture, and gather impact data in Bikaner, a region with established Rangsutra operations. This report is three-fold, containing the socioeconomic impact assessment tool designed by the fellows, as well as assessments of Rangsutra’s impact in both, Barmer and Bikaner regions.
The fellows completed 131 interviews with participating artisans, of whom 100% were women. The women ranged in age from 16 to 55, with an average age of 31 years old. Sixty-one percent of the women artisans asked for more work, and the remaining 39% were content with the number of hours they were currently working. Just less than 100% of the participants worked for the local craft market at some point in time, if not simultaneously while working with Rangsutra, giving participants a comparative insight to the benefits of working for Rangsutra. Women artisans also saved 41% of their money on their own, in contrast to 24% of women who contributed to pooled household saving. Nine percent of money earned by women artisans went to education, for themselves or their families.
The field work and assessment analysis found that centers in Barmer, and in particular Nagli Ri Dhani, Mahabar, the artisans have the capacity and desire for more work. Artisans in Barmer want to increase their embroidery skills to expand the scope of their orders. These observations point to several initiatives for improving Rangsutra artisans’ productivity and work quality. The request for increased work and more sophisticated technical ability could be met by instituting monthly skills-training session in Barmer. A greater range of skills can drive increased orders, and the system could be replicated in Rajasthan. In particular, the skills training could raise awareness of the need for quality production.
Bodapati, Sandhya and Matthews, Grace, "Assessment Guide and Pilot Study of Ragsutra's Social Impact" (2016). Miller Center Fellowship. 77.