by Su-May Tan
In September 2010, three refugee artisan groups came together to form Tanma, a women’s cooperative with the interests of refugee women at heart.
Tanma means ‘strength’in Burmese and the three groups that have combined forces are Mang Tha, representing the Alliance of Chin Refugees (woven and sewn handicraft); Kaoprise for Mon Women (soap and massage oil); and, Chin Women’s Organisation (batik products).
The objective of these groups is to create a safe place for the women to earn an income, to protect their rights and to empower themselves through skills which they can use in Malaysia as well as in their third countries.
Tanma products can be purchased at Tiny Tapir (Bangsar Village II), online at www.elevyn.com or at the Good Shepherd Church, Setapak on Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 December 2011.
Better yet, come visit the Kaoprise soap-making and virgin coconut oil centre on the 10th floor, Pudu Plaza, Kuala Lumpur or Mang Tha sewing and weaving centre at Lorong Brunei 3, off Jalan Pudu.
Tanma also needs volunteers to drive the women to/from the sales venues, and also to teach English. For more information, please call 014-666 1435 or 03-7770 3671, or visit us at www.tanmawomen.org. Find us on Facebook at TANMA Federation.