Khiva Silk Workshops
These are just a few of the people who work in our workshops and their stories.
Madrim: Workshops' Director and Master Dyer
Before I worked in the workshops I used to restore the Khan's palaces, but was made redundant when the budget ran out. I, like many others in Khiva, went to Kazakhstan to find work but I did not like being so far away from my family. I like working at the silk workshops, especially knowing that by creating these jobs, we are making a such a difference to so many local families.
Safargul: Master carpet weaver, designer, and committee member
I had woven carpets by hand for five years, and was invited to join the carpet workshop as a master weaver when it first opened. I really like working here, but it is not always easy. For example, there are sometimes disagreements between the girls which I have to sort out, being on the management committee. I particularly enjoy being involved in the drawing the new designs.
Sharofat: Suzanni embroiderer
When Operation Mercy and UNESCO were starting the workshop, they talked with our community leader, who sent them round to our house. My husband and I are disabled, and life was very difficult on the small state allowance we had. They invited me to work at the carpet workshop, which I did for about 3 years. I now embroider suzannis at the suzanni workshop, which I also enjoy, especially because we sit in small rooms and can chat with the other girls. I'm really thankful to the workshops.
Davlat: Dyer
I've been working at the carpet workshop since it opened, learning natural dying skills. I'm married, and my wife is at home. I really enjoy the work. During the summer we have to get up really early in morning, because it is too hot to work during the middle of the day, but it means I can go home and be with my family for a bit.