Hillary Clinton meets rural women artisans with Anita Dongre

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Ahmedabad, Dec 12 (IANS) Hillary Clinton visited the Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) headquarters here and was joined by designer Anita Dongre. The former US First Lady’s visit was seen as an encouragement for women from rural India.

The non-profit organisation has been working towards the upliftment of women in rural India for over four decades.

“It was a privilege for me to have been a part of such a special evening with Hillary Clinton and the women members of SEWA. The women were filled with enthusiasm in having such a global powerhouse and woman champion amidst them who took the time to inspire, motivate and applaud them,” Dongre told IANS.

“She heard all the game-changing stories of these courageous women and was heartwarming to see her relentless support and encouragement to help these women achieve economic empowerment and independence,” she added.

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They visited SEWA on Tuesday and were welcomed by Reema Nanavaty who leads the NGO. She has been recognised across India and in the neighbouring countries as a catalyst for various women and helps them achieve economic freedom and liberation.

Clinton has been a strong advocate of women empowerment and has had a personal connect with the SEWA organisation for over two decades.

Having been familiar with Dongre, whose designs she has worn in the past, Clinton said: “I’m very excited about someone as accomplished and successful as Anita Dongre being here today because she has an international brand, that she has built and she will find more ways to work with SEWA members. I think that’s another innovation that will grow overtime.”

Dongre’s commitment to revive the Indian crafts and empower women led her to work in close association with these artisans on her brand Grassroot, a sustainable luxury prAat label, and she now extends the work to her bridal couture line.

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Through this, she aims at providing employment to rural women with the comfort of their homes.

“Women empowerment is close to my heart and we’re privileged to be associated with SEWA and use design as a tool to achieve this goal,” said Dongre.

–IANS

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