Toi's Story

Working at the Thuy Kinh ceramics group in Vietnam is like being part of a family, according to Toi, who makes ceramics which are sold by Traidcraft.

"The relationship between the leader and the workers is very close," he said. "It is more like being a member of the family."

Toi is one of 80 employees in the group, which is based in the traditional ceramics village of Bat Trang, near Hanoi. The ceramics group works closely with Traidcraft supplier, Craft Link, which provides the group with advance payments and helps with design

"Before I joined here I worked in another ceramics company," he said. "I like the work here. I can do quite a lot of the steps in the ceramic process but I specialise in fitting different pieces together."

"I feel the work here is very stable and I am getting a higher salary here than in my other job."

Toi and his wife have two children, aged four and one. Like many people in the area, the couple also farm to provide rice and other food for their family. Toi has been able to buy a motorbike to travel the 10kms between his home and work.

Craft Link Background

Founded in 1996 by a group of international nongovernmental organizations, Craft Link works with fair trade artisans in an effort to generate income, with a focus on ethnic minorities, street children and artisans with disabilities.

Craft Link is a Vietnamese not-for-profit organisation that seeks to assist small Vietnamese craft producers to develop their businesses and find market opportunities in a changing economy. It also has two shops in Hanoi, provides training for traditional craft artisans and operates wholesale and export sales.

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