Taller de Añil de San Luis de Los Ranchos is a business that was born out of need. A group of women in the impoverished rural community of San Luis de Los Ranchos knew they needed another source of income in order to be able to feed their families, but they didn’t know what that could be. They turned to añil, or indigo, the deep blue dye that is a common crop in El Salvador. None of them had any knowledge or experience with añil. However with the help of the Salvadoran Enterprises for Women program offered by Centro Intercambio y Solidaridad, they received technical and administrative training to get their business going. They are now successfully producing and selling goods beautifully dyed clothing and accessories.
This is a huge accomplishment for these women. Many of them left school early. They range in age from 20 to 60 years old. As a result, learning new skills was a big change from their daily lives. Being able to now make use of these skills to support themselves is empowering for them. The women work out of one woman’s rural home which is right in their community. This is of great importance to them as it allows them to stay close to their children and they can walk to work. From their mountain-top community, transportation is one of the greatest barriers to employment.