GoodWeave is a global non-profit initiative working to end child labour the carpet industry and offering viable alternative opportunities to the removed carpet children through education and vocational training. GoodWeave is a unique business-NGO cooperation working independently in various carpet producing and consuming countries. Through workplace inspection, monitoring and consumer labelling, GoodWeave label provides the best possible assurance that no illegal child labour was used in the manufacture of a carpet or rug. Broadly speaking, GoodWeave works for socially and environmentally responsible business practices. International RugMark network presently operates in Nepal, India, Germany, the United States of America, and the United Kingdom. GoodWeave is also active in many other European countries, Canada and United Arab Emirates. GoodWeave International., the governing international body is registered in Germany that owns the GoodWeave trademark.
Salient Features of GoodWeave
1) GoodWeave is voluntarily licensed to carpet manufacturers/exporters in the producing countries and importers/retailers in the marketing countries.
2) GoodWeave Foundations in producing countries have an independent workplace inspection and monitoring mechanism to ensure compliance of GoodWeave criteria.
3) GoodWeave certifies individual carpets with GoodWeave labels that have individual code numbers for verification.
4) GoodWeave removes child labourers from workplaces and provides them with a long-term and meaningful rehabilitation with appropriate education and vocational training.
5) GoodWeave makes concerted efforts for family reintegration of the children while ensuring opportunity for continued education with continued support for schooling.
6) GoodWeave also carries out preventive education and other welfare programs for children and families of carpet workers.
Nepal GoodWeave Foundation (NGF)
•Nepal GoodWeave Foundation was established on December 24, 1995 as a result of a joint collaboration among carpet entrepreneurs; child-rights NGOs; and international development organizations, viz. UNICEF, the German Agency for Technical Cooperation (GTZ), and the Asian American Free Labour Institute (AAFLI).
Nepal GoodWeave Foundation is an active member of GoodWeave International. The Foundation has proven GoodWeave to be a viable initiative to effectively address the child labour problem in Nepal, giving meaningful alternatives to the carpet children. In its 13 years’ of operation in Nepal, GoodWeave has been able to bring more than half of the carpet industry capacity including some spinning industries on board i.e. nearly 50% of the production capacity in Nepal is being inspected and monitored by NGF. This means effective maintenance of child labour free environment in the factories while preventing thousands of children to enter the factories, often dropping out of schools. On the other hand, more than two thousand child labourers have been removed from the carpet factories so far and more than half of them have got enrolled under GoodWeave’s rehabilitation programs. The Foundation is gradually directing more resources on preventive programs in carpet factories.
Objectives of NGF
•* To prevent use of child labour in production of carpet and rugs by having carpet producers/exporters abide by the legal system and fulfilling their social responsibilities by becoming GoodWeave licensees.
* To rehabilitate displaced carpet child labourers with education and vocational training for giving them a new hope for future with an ultimate goal of community reintegration.
* To conduct child labour preventive programs in carpet factories focusing on education and health of workers, their children and family members.
* To promote socially responsible and environmentally sound business practices taking carpet industry as a model to start with.
* To advocate and influence the concerned organizations, business sector and the general public for protection and care of the Rights of the Child.
Primary Activities of NGF
* Promoting and licensing GoodWeave trademark.
* Inspection and monitoring of carpet factories and certification of child labour free carpets.
* Removal and rehabilitation of carpet child workers with appropriate education and vocational training.
* Family reintegration and community based rehabilitation of displaced carpet child workers.
* Health services through medical clinics and mobile medical camps for carpet workers and their children.
* School sponsorship, early childhood development activities (day care and education) in carpet factories for children of carpet workers and empowerment of workers and their families through awareness programs.
* Flexible literacy classes for workers with primary focus on child workers aged 14 to 18 years.
* Motivating and supporting individual carpet factories to establish and run day care cum education centres for children of the workers.
* Promotion of child labour free Nepalese carpets in international markets.
* Advocacy for socially and environmentally responsible business practices and implementation of the legal provisions.
Sources and Uses of Funds
The Foundation receives funds mainly from GoodWeave label fees, membership fee and grants from donors. Contributions made by importers as label fees are received through importing country’s GoodWeave offices, are exclusively used for rehabilitation and other child welfare programs in carpet factories. Exporters’ contributions are used for inspection, monitoring, certification, promotion and other program supports.
The General Assembly is composed of GoodWeave licensed carpet firms/companies and child right NGOs.
The Executive Committee is composed of nine members- four from the carpet sector; four from child right NGO sector, and one member is selected by the eight executive members from among the independent professionals or intellectuals of the country.
Sub-Committees: There are four Sub-committees - Inspection, Monitoring & Certification, Child Development, Media/Advocacy and Fund/ Raising Contribution.
The Executive Director is responsible for policy consultation, planning, programme development, fund raising, programme implementation, review and other management functions. Executive Director manages Foundation’s office with a total of 15 staffs.