Female Weavenrs Group of Ban Tai, Thailand: The Process of Empowering Community by Using Ethnic Wisdoms
This study focuses a process of empowering the community of the Baan Tai silk weaving group by using local wisdom of the Teen Chok(hemborders) silk weaving method. The silk weaving at Baan Tai operates exclusively by village women who live in Khu-Bua Sub-district, Muang District, Ratchaburi Province Thailand. They inherited the ethnic know-how of Teen Chok silk weaving from the Thai Yuan through their ancestors who migrated from Chiang Saen. This know-how enables them to negotiate with the government and private sectors on managing their own activities and operations. The weaving provides a supplementary source of income for low-income families which helps improve their quality of life. The group has utilized many strategic operating plans such as conserving the Teen Chok silk weaving by setting up Teen Chok silk contests and advertising the Teen Chok silk weaving by having exhibitions displaying ancient Teen Chok silk fabrics. Owing to a marketing potential, a social network, a knowledge management exchange among groups, an ethnic network with other provinces to use the experience gained for weaving development, their ability in integrating economic, social and cultural capitals of the communities, this group has become strong, widely-accepted and powerful in the society.
Keywords: Community Empowering, Women and Development, Women Social Network, Economic, Social and Cultural Capitals
Dr. Phitak Siriwong
Assistant Professor, Department of Community Development
Department of Community Development
Faculties of Management Science
Silpakorn University, Phetchaburi Thailand 10210