Sabahar believes that economic independence in a stable job enables women to make the best decisions for themselves and their families. Sabahar was founded by a woman who is now the General Manager. 60% of Management staff and 50% of middle management are women and 60% of all employees are women. The hierarchy is accepted and all employees adapt to a company culture in which men and women are equal.
Through the years, employees have participated in various training and capacity building opportunities which focus both on job skills, as well as life skills. The impact can be seen in their ever-increasing interest to share ideas, participate in decision-making, and benefit their communities. They are leaving abusive partners, pursuing their education and job promotions, securing long term assets and ensuring their children are not only finishing high school but going on to University.
Yeshi says it best: “Every morning, I take my purse, leave my compound and go to work. My neighbors all know I have a job. Because of this, I am respected.”
Sabahar’s production aims to be in harmony with the planet. The company has been deemed a ‘zero carbon emission factory’ by OEKO-TEK in 2020. This status was given because of two critical factors: most of the production is not dependent on electricity or gas; the Sabahar garden is so full of trees that the production consumption is off-set by the small forest on the compound.
Sabahar is continually experimenting with new technology to reduce negative environmental impact. We have solar panels on the roof to decrease our dependence on electricity to heat water for dyeing. We have a bio-gas plant that provides enough fuel for an entire day of dyeing in the dye department. Our rainwater catchment system is a great help to be able to water the garden in the dry season. Though still requiring additional upgrading, our water purification and recycling system ensures the removal of dye particles and neutralizing the dyeing discharge water, so that it can be reused. In our production cycle, electricity is only required for the dying machines, washing machines, irons and computers. Sabahar is fortunate to source more than 80% of all its raw materials locally (almost unheard of in the global fashion industry). The company only uses natural fibers to ensure everything produced is biodegradable.