Two years ago we introduced Knitter Tips at checkout on our US and Canadian stores.
This allowed our customers to give an extra thank you to our artisans in Nepal who knit their sweaters and apparel.
We specify on the tip section that 100% of gratuities go to our team of over 800 local knitters, most of them women from the Kathmandu Valley where a little extra can have a big impact.
But where exactly did the tips go?
Rather than just tell you that the tips went to our knitters, we wanted to show you!
First, we asked.
When it was time to distribute tips, our owner Francis Dube contacted each of the groups of knitters we work with in Nepal, let them know we were about to transfer over some tips from our customers, and asked them how they thought would be the best way to share it with our workers.
#1 Lunch + Education Raffle
The group also distributed money by doing an education raffle amongst ladies that had kids going to school.
#2 Team Building + Staff Raffle
The larger group had a special team building event just before the Holidays, so they decided to do a raffle amongst the whole staff and knitters, as well as use some of the tips for food. You can see photos of the event and a few of the lucky winners below.
More than the money.
American and Canadian dollars go a long way in Nepal, and our team members were extremely appreciative of the extra funds they received.
However it wasn't just the money they were excited about.
It's one thing to be proud of your work and be paid fairly for it, but it's a whole different thing when a random shopper on our website is willing to say thank you to a knitter they've never met before 10 time zones away!
To our surprise, our knitter tips program created a connection between our knitters and customers that none of the workers had experienced before.
The fact that people appreciated their work so much that they were willing to donate more than what was asked of them in terms of money, was a gesture they did not expect.
Thank you for your tips.
Given the impact of our Knitter Tips program over the past two years, we plan on continuing to invite our customers to tip at checkout for the foreseeable future, and also continue matching these tips!
Thank you for your generous contributions, which greatly impact the lives of our team members in Nepal.