Thu 12 2015 04:29:10

Tashkent, Uzbekistan ( -- Inclusive business projects in Khorezm and Urgench help girls and women with disabilities integrate into social life, improve their incomes, and contribute to the development of their communities.

Farogat Saydullaeva’s sewing enterprise is well known in Urgench not only for reasonable prices for the products, good quality, but also for its employees. The ‘Urgench Milliy Tikuvchilik’ enterprise has provided employment for girls and women with disabilities since the first day of its operation. For them, this employment is not only a source of income, but also a place where they can communicate with others, improve their skills, and realize their potential.

For quite a while, Farogat Saydullaeva, the founder of the enterprise, had been working as a teacher of sewing courses at specialized school #94 in Urgench. At some point, she decided to quit her work at the school and started her business that currently employs her former students.

In 2013, with the support of UNDP’s ‘Business Forum of Uzbekistan’ project and ‘Sasol’ Farogat Saydullaeva expanded her enterprise and purchased additional sewing machines. As of today, the company ‘Urgench Milliy Tikuvchilik’ produces more than 30 kinds of products, including traditional clothing, linens and other home accessories.

The small enterprise of the enthusiastic woman has become a successful inclusive business model. ‘Urgench Milliy Tikuvchilik’ has helped more than 200 girls and women with hearing impairments to master sewing skills, generate a steady income, and to feel their ideas and work help meet the needs of their communities.

“Every week, girls from different districts of Khorezm come to me asking for a job. For many of them, making money is not as important as to be able to interact with and be surrounded by people who accept and understand them,” says Farogat Saydullaeva, founder of ‘Urgench Milliy Tikuvchilik’.

Farogat Saydullaeva is planning to open ‘Urgench Milliy Tikuvchilik’ branches in rural areas of the Khorezm Region, expand its product range, attract tourists by selling national clothes, products and crafts, as well as organizing master-classes in Khorezm embroidery. To achieve these goals, Farogat Saydullaeva, together with her employees, participates in various exhibitions where she demonstrates her products.

In addition, Farogat Saydullaeva is going to launch a fitness center, a beauty salon and computer courses. She says she is planning to start these new activities as part of her current venture to help the girls take care of themselves and live healthy lives. The doors of the complex will be open for all, without any exception, and it will become a model for inclusive society where everyone, including people with disabilities, maintain a dialogue and mutual help.

This inclusive business model, which is currently running in a test mode in Khorezm, is implemented jointly with the UN Aral Sea Programme in Nukus, Karakalpakstan. The sewing enterprise, which currently employs girls with disabilities, was launched under the Society of Persons with Disabilities in Karakalpakstan.

Representatives of the BFU project participated in a one-day field visit to the ‘Urgench Milliy Tikuvchilik’ company in Urgench. The delegation examined the achievements of the project, learn about the enterprise’s economic efficiency and discussed possible ways to enhance the business.

“Creation of an inclusive society with opportunities for everyone to contribute to its development, improving the economic wellbeing of the people are UNDP’s key activities,” said Bakhodir Bekov, Manager of UNDP’s ‘Business Forum of Uzbekistan (Phase III)’ project, during the visit.

“UNDP in Uzbekistan works with its national partners to contribute to jobs creation, improving the business environment, engaging vulnerable groups, particularly women and young people in business. One of the initiatives undertaken in this area is a joint project of the Chamber of Commerce and UNDP’s ‘Business Forum of Uzbekistan’. One of the components of the initiative is aimed to support and promote inclusive businesses.”


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