So the gifting market in India is huge… estimated at $30 billion, split into 3 broad categories – Festival Gifting ($7.5 billion), Personal Gifting ($20 billion) and Corporate Gifting ($2.5 billion)! We’re (Diya) a microscopic speck on the canvas, catering to this massive market!

Come September, the festive gifting season begins…Ganesh Chaturthi, Dussera, Navratri, Diwali, Christmas and New Year. We gear up for the season right from April, with diyas being painted, festive packaging designs finalized, stock of all the products in the portfolio kept ready for the numerous pop-up shops at Bangalore’s IT campuses during the festive months, etc. It’s the time of year that we bring in the revenues to create more employment, impact more families and take us through the rest of the year in terms of cash flows.

What you buy, matters  – what you buy from Diya, matters more. Every diya you buy, every box of Diya chocolates you gift to your loved ones, every screen printed box or bag you order –  you impact lives….not just that of the makers of the product but their families as well.

Suresh, was born in April, 1995, with cerebral palsy. With physiotherapy, his motor movements have improved remarkably over the years. After skills training at the Diya Foundation, he moved into employment at Diya Innovations, when the company was launched two and a half years ago. Today he supervises training in papier mache of a team of 10+ trainees. His duties include ensuring they get their work material in time, supervising the quality of work, tracking trainee improvement, etc. His trainees make bags, bowls, bins, Christmas wreaths and lanterns out of newspaper and discarded pamphlets.

He’s learning to be a good supervisor, trainer and leader. Employment means a lot to him. His salary of Rs. 7500 is a significant contribution to his family income. He is the chief wage earner at home. He ensures that a portion of it is saved for the future….and is proud of his personal savings of Rs.14000, to date, safe in the bank.  His mother, who works as domestic help and father, currently unemployed depend on his income to make ends meet.

So every time you have to buy a gift, need a give away for an event – either at work or for a personal occasion, buy it from a social enterprise, where the purchase makes an impact on the lives of the people making that gift. Not only are you encouraging employment, but directly building self esteem and acceptance for these individuals in their homes and the community.

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