The project Revealed Hands won first prize of the Alpine Pluralism Award 2018 in the category “Integration into the Labour Market” at the international gathering in Turin and Innsbruck. The Alpine Pluralism Award 2018 makes visible innovative integration projects in the Alpine Space to increase public awareness and provide inspiration.
The project Revealed Hands was intended for a group of women living in Jesenice (Slovenia) with diverse backgrounds: immigrants who came from southern Balkans and who were brought to Slovenia by different life stories, coincidences, and conditions in their home country, and refugee women living in a asylum home in Ljubljana. 90% of these women are socially and economically deprivileged. Local communities took also part in the project.
The project was based on the experience from previous projects. This time however, in addition to textile design, space for various artistic approaches, such as movement, play, theatre improvisation, photography, video, poetry were provided to create a relaxing and creative atmosphere during the meetings.
The project aimed at integrating migrant women into the local and national labour market, and at educating local community about the culture of these immigrant women and about the importance of collaboration, co-creation and integration. It encouraged local people to overcome xenophobia and prejudice. This led to a better inclusion of the immigrant women in the local community. The biggest challenges that the project responsibles experienced were linked to the involvement of young people in the project, and to cultural and personal differences among the participants.
“An immigrant woman is at least three times marginalized person: as a woman; as a mother and care-taker; as an immigrant” people working at Revealed Hands say. “Their basic needs include useful and meaningful creativity, social inclusion and involvement in the wider community. At the same time they need to contribute to the family income, to connect with their own cultural roots and to haave access to knowledge. Textile design became medium for their psychosocial empowerment and a sustainable business model for their financial independence.”