Prapapon was born and raised in a poor Hmong hill-tribe family. More fortunate than most hill-tribe children, she was able to attend school and learned to read and write in Thai. When Prapapon grew up, she married a young man from a Hmong family and moved to the village of Ban Huay Hom, about 50 km from her home.
The young newlyweds had a hard time building a life together and finding a secure source of income, despite their reputations as hard workers. Prapapon was excited when she discovered the opportunity to weave hammocks and applied herself to learn how to weave every variety of hammock. As more weavers were trained in the art of hammock weaving, Prapapon’s reading and writing skills came in handy! She helps decipher the pattern sheets for weavers who can’t read.
Prapapon is now 25 years old and has six children. She is more committed than ever to providing for her family and making sure her children can receive an education. She has grown into more responsibility and her organizational skills help her oversee production for nearly 50 of her fellow Hmong weavers. With this loan, she will be able to get her own production going and become an independent producer.
About Yellow Leaf Hammocks
Yellow Leaf Hammocks is a for-profit social enterprise that trains and supports artisan weavers as they create high-margin luxury hammocks. By laying the foundation for a sustainable micro-economy, the organization is helping alleviate poverty, social injustice and environmental degradation for rural hill tribes in northern Thailand. The enterprise is a wholesale hammock seller that distributes its products through retail boutiques and e-commerce websites.
Kiva lenders’ funds are used to help artisans buy the raw materials to make hammocks. Additionally, the funds are used to expand the distribution network to increase hammock sales globally.
Yellow Leaf Hammocks joined Kiva through our Experimental Partnership Program, and has therefore received a lighter level of due diligence. Accordingly, loans associated with this partner carry a higher level of risk than typical Kiva loans.