Empowering Women Weavers to Improve Woven Clothes...

The study discusses the effort to empower women weavers to improve woven clothes products through International Service-Learning (IS-L) Program in Sumba Tengah Regency. For the Sumbanese culture, woven clothes have a deep philosophical meaning so that they are not only used for everyday wears but also for performing sacred ceremonies. Sumbanese women play a key role in providing the woven clothes, but only small number of women can make woven clothes. Based on the problems, the IS-L program conducted by Duta Wacana Christian University, Yogyakarta – Indonesia organized workshops on empowering women weavers to improve their skills in woven clothes making. The program implemented service-learning method integrating community service and academic curriculum. This method consists of four steps, namely: Prepare, Explore, Serve, and Reflect. The results of the study show that empowering women weavers must involve the local community from the beginning of the program. The enthusiasm of the participants plays a key role in sustaining the tradition of woven clothes making in Sumba Tengah Regency. This enthusiasm is increased by the active participation of the local prominent figure.

Keywords: empowerment, international service-learning, Sumba, women weaver, woven clothes

Tags:Community BuildingDiversity and Inclusion

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