Earlier this week we were introduced to the brand Kisaku – an online platform specialising in modern heritage-infused fashion and home decor collections, which are carefully curated from Indonesian artisans and craftmakers. Founders Felicia and Lenny continue their story here, sharing with us how they invest in the lives of the artisan producers.
Kisaku has two goals. One, that it will become a platform for Indonesian artisans and crafters to promote their product overseas, starting with Australia. Secondly, that it will provide a channel for professionals and entrepreneurs alike, such as yourself, to take part in shaping the future generation in any way that you can. Be it through your mentoring time, a seed fund for the education loan or just through purchasing one of the many ethically sourced products in the offer.
For every purchase through Kisaku, a percentage of the profit will be set aside for setting the MicroEduLoan. The educational micro fund will be accessible to the eligible talented young generations allowing them to pursue a skill-enhancing course of their choice. Kisaku will also provide a mentoring program to guide these young talents to succeed in the workplace.
Through our conversations with our business partners, accompanied by our desktop research and field trips to Indonesia where the artisans live, we discovered a number of issues that often hinder the progression of artisan and crafters to continue developing their skills and/or applying them to the marketplace. A number of pain points were identified from the lack of skills and access to marketplace to market the products to people who appreciate their craftsmanship, as well as lack of skills to adapt the style of products that would be appetising for the target market. Most of the time, the root cause points down to lack of access to education / upskilling and funding.
- We are attempting to address these specific issues through three main components that will make up our Kisaku Give Back program, one of them is MicroEduLoan
MicroEduLoan – The educational micro fund will be provided for education or up-skilling purposes, the use of which will be closely monitored and regulated.
- Mentoring Program – The mentoring program will involve guidance from interested designers who are more experienced and have creative eyes, knowing what will appeal to the market.
- Industry Companion – Pairing our partners to industry representatives or working closely with our partners throughout the journey, providing real time market insights as well as helpful business and commercial advice.
- Our first MicroEduLoan program will be launched mid of this year and it is to support “Weaving For Life” program.
The program aims to support the continuation and sustainability of weaving culture in Timor Tengah Utara, a part of Lesser Sunda Island. In this area, the school kids are taught to weave so they could inherit the weaving skill and keep the tradition going.
The weaving patterns created by these kids are then replicated by the experienced weaver in Jogjakarta so we can produce the fabrics in larger volume. The handwoven fabrics are then turned into ready wear or products which we can sell to the market.
To celebrate the launch of our MicroEduLoan program, we are creating a few special products specifically designed for Australian market. We will work with a British designer who lives in Indonesia.
It will be exciting and we can’t wait for the launch!
Celebrating small success
We have reached more than 20 direct partners in the past one year and have partnered with one of the biggest e-commerce in Indonesia, who is working directly with more than 4000 artisans in Indonesia. Practically, whatever you are looking for from Indonesian artisans, Kisaku can bring that to you 🙂 That’s is our goal – to be the one-stop market solution for everything Indonesian.
Kisaku is now proudly supported by Indonesian Trade Attache and Indonesian Trade Promotion Centre (ITPC) Sydney as part of ‘Trade With Remarkable Indonesia’, a program by Indonesian Ministry of Trade. We are also supported by the Indonesian Consulate General in Melbourne.
From the supply / partnership side, we also need to train the artisans to be brave and to embrace the market challenges. A lot of them are nervous about entering the global market as they are not sure if they have what it takes to be successful. Some of them are also quite complacent with what they have achieved (or have not achieved, if we think that there is more for them to achieve in the future). With Kisaku being new in the marketplace, we also need to establish the credentials to show that we can help them and support them throughout the journey.
This is only the beginning…we are excited to show you more of what we have.
If you find yourself sharing the same passion for shaping the future of the young ones and if you are interested in learning more about Kisaku’s MicroEduLoan initiative and mentoring program, please shoot us an email.
We look forward to reaching out to more artisans and craftmakers, to grow the numbers of artisans benefit through our MicroEduLoan program, and to represent Indonesia in the global market, showcasing our beautiful products and promoting our Indonesia’s rich heritage and culture.
For more information about Kisaku visit: http://www.kisaku.com.au/index.php?route=common/home