The Arghand cooperative in Kandahar was founded in May 2005 by Sarah Chayes who lives in Afghanistan and spends most her time between Kabul and Kandahar.
The members of the cooperative, both men and women, bear equal responsibility. They share the revenues as well as the risks. Members have control over all aspects of production regardless of gender or ethnic background.
Arghand was established to contribute to the economic development of the southern provinces of Afghanistan.
The cooperative produces not only handwoven scarves and shawls, but also natural skincare products from fruits of the Kandahar region.
The exclusive Arghand scarves are designed by members of the cooperative who are assisted by a highly experienced weaver from Herat (a city in the western part of the country).
The untreated silk is imported from China. The women and men in the cooperative dye the silk by hand, and then use traditional wooden looms to weave the scarves.
The members jointly determine the colours of the scarves. The design of the scarves is often based on the Afghan turban, which is still worn by many men.
The sale of the scarves keeps the Afghan weaving tradition alive and assures that the members of the cooperative earn an income.
Take a look at the scarves from Arghand.
Reeling silk at Arghand
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