Knitting the Wind project
The transition to clean technologies must be led by a change in how energy giants allocate their capital
Tejiendo el Viento (Spanish for ‘Knitting the Wind’) is an initiative by Siemens Gamesa to improve economic conditions for artisan women in the Isthmus region in Oaxaca, Mexico. It is a part of the Company’s social responsibility strategy in its ‘Community Engagement’ pillar.
Women who participate in Tejiendo el Viento recover their traditional craft with three different techniques – knitting, embroidery and cadenilla (a typical chain-shaped knitting pattern) – which they incorporate into textile and leather products. These give shape to unique pieces that preserve the ancestral knowledge and colorfulness of women in the Isthmus.
Tejiendo el Viento is a pioneering business with a social approach that empowers artisans and helps to preserve the tradition of their ancestors by selling goods and products consistent with the current dynamic and cosmopolitan market.
Through the excellent quality of their embroidery and textile fabrication, the project aims to:
- Drive sustainable development in the community through better sources of income for artisan women when they sell their traditional artwork
- Lay the foundations for their incorporation into formal trade, thus favoring the establishment of a sustainable business that may grow to the rest of the country and the world
- Strengthen their technical, managerial and organizational skills by receiving training in the topics that are most relevant for the success of their business
- Develop a network with different stakeholders that could help open up new markets for the artisans, including e-commerce.
The role of Siemens Gamesa: links of sustainability
Siemens Gamesa supports Tejiendo el Viento through four dimensions:
1. Providing seed capital and acting as first customer. All of the Company’s corporate gifts and employee giveaways come from this initiative.
2. Driving a community organization model (cooperative) which allows for participants to open their own business.
3. Strengthening their technical, managerial and organizational skills through training in the topics that are most relevant for the success of their business.
4. Promoting their business and offering their products to Siemens Gamesa customers, employees and the public related to our company.
Places from the heart, products from the soul
Tejiendo el Viento came to life in 2016 in the area of the Tehuantepec Isthmus, looking to strengthen the family economy of artisan women in the region. In the Isthmus, the tradition of embroidery, knitting and cadenilla is passed on from mothers to daughters, generation after generation.
Tejiendo el Viento took hold after the earthquake that struck the region in September 2017, when it became necessary to make every possible effort to reactivate the area.
By the beginning of 2018, the first group of seven indigenous artisans had come together, with members from San Juan Guchicovi, Santa Rosa de Lima, Juchitán and Chicapa de Castro, and it was with them that the first collection was developed.
The collection comprised eight different items with embroidery on quality leather, such as passport holders for men and women, travel cases, pencil cases and luggage tags. Each of the products incorporates the talent of these artisan women, resulting in a combination of colors, textures and perspectives that give each piece its own personality.
In 2019, we officially launched Tejiendo el Viento with 140 artisan women from 12 different communities in 5 municipalities in the region, and with the second collection for corporate and public sale.
Thus, we introduced this initiative alongside each of the zapoteca women who participate in this project and join them in this organized endeavor to add value to their lives and the lives of their families.