KOTA KINABALU (January 30): After a year of extreme isolation and economic decline due to the pandemic, most artisans are unemployed.
In Kudat, weavers who supplied their Lygodium (climbing fern) baskets to hotels and tourism-related businesses have earned next to nothing since Malaysia implemented a full nationwide lockdown in June 2021.
“The pandemic has broken us,” said Farnie Loboi, 52, one of hundreds of Lygodium weavers in Kudat.
As governments began to allow more businesses to operate under phase four of the national stimulus plan, Farnie expressed gratitude for the assistance provided by state and federal governments to help them recover. on foot.
Recently, Farnie received 600 container basket orders from Raja Permaisuri Agong Tunku Hajah Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah.
“We are grateful for the help of various organizations to help us reach the market. The Queen’s generous support is giving income to around 50 Kudat weavers over the next two months.
“Several villages are involved in this project, and we will finish everything before March,” she said.
It is believed that the baskets ordered by the Queen will be used in the upcoming Aidilfitri celebration.
With over 30 years of basket making experience, Farnie is also one of 15 entrepreneurs from Sabah who recently signed an offer letter to participate in the Global Entrepreneur One Stop Center (GLOPEC) program.
GLOPEC is initiated by Yayasan Sabah Group, in collaboration with Unit Peneraju Agenda Bumiputera (TERAJU).
The program is expected to spur further efforts to empower small and medium enterprise (SME) entrepreneurs in the B40 and M40 groups in Sabah and pave the way for opportunities in the global industrial market.