Handmade by Women. Named for Women.

 

The grandmas would be the first to tell you that their weaving cooperative is not just about them, it’s about women everywhere. We strive to support the accomplishments of radical women around the world.

There are many people - women, men, and non-binary people - who wake up every single morning and fight for their rights. They choose to be the drivers of change in their communities even when it is unpopular, demanding, and dangerous for them and their loved ones.

At the Radical Grandma Collective we work to celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of bad-ass individuals that we admire and that inspire us by naming each scarf after an activist who identifies as female. 

This year, in honor of International Women’s Day, we want to highlight the accomplishments of some of the women we’ve named our products after.

A few of the scarves,  Helen, Jean, Margaret,  and Lois, are named after our own grandmothers, amazing ladies who made our existence possible. Also close to our hearts, the Ranong, which is made entirely out of Na Nong Bong-grown cotton, is named for Mae Rote, the leader of the weaving cooperative.

While the Radical Grandma Collective works with a small group of activists that we know intimately, our other scarves are named for female activists across many countries and movements because we’re all tied together in the struggle for human rights. Read on to learn about the accomplishments of some of the women who inspire us:

Harriet Tubman, an American abolitionist and humanitarian who was born into slavery, escaped and made thirteen missions to rescue approximately seventy enslaved families and friends using the Underground Railroad.

Malala Yousafzai is a Pakistani activist who defied the Taliban in Pakistan and demanded that girls be allowed to receive an education. She was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman in 2012, but survived and went on to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.

Berta Cáceres was a Honduran environmental activist and indigenous leader. She won the Goldman Environmental Prize in 2015 for successfully leading a grassroots campaign to have the largest dam builder withdraw from the Agua Zarca Dam. In March of 2016 she was assassinated in her home by armed intruders.

Chhavi Rajawat is sarpanch (village head) of Soda village, 60 kilometres from Jaipur, India. 30-year-old Chhavi is India's youngest and only MBA to become a village head. Chhavi spoke at the UN about the role of civil society in fighting poverty and promoting development.“I want the conference to help bring about faster change so that this generation can enjoy that kind of life that I - and you in this audience - take for granted."

Margaret Sanger, born in 1879, was the founder of the American Reproductive Rights Movement. In 1910 she started a publication promoting a woman's right to birth control (a term that she coined), but obscenity laws forced her to flee the country until 1915. In 1916 she opened the first birth control clinic in the U.S. She fought for reproductive rights until she died in 1966, one year after the legalization of birth control in the US.

Caroline Anne L'huillier served 18 years in the US military as a Transgender soldier. She was discharged in 2014 when the military found out that she is trans and has been fighting for equal service ever since.

Ibtihaj Muhammad is the first Muslim American woman to wear a hijab while competing for the United States in the Olympics.

So far we’ve named over 50 scarves and blankets after influential women and luckily for us, it’s never hard to keep coming up with new names. One thing our world has plenty of is inspiring women. Take today to recognize how the achievements, hard work, and love of all women have contributed to your life. Keep growing the movement or as the grandmas would say in Thai, su su (keep fighting)!

Katie Mathieson