The Social Enterprise “Esnaf”

The social enterprise “Esnaf” is an internet platform for the promotion of handicrafts, but there is also a physical space, a shop in the center of Skopje.   What sets it apart from other creative platforms is the way it combines business and social equality.

The uniqueness of handicrafts, the spirit of tradition, the power of fused ideas and actions, mutual learning, cooperation and support and promotion of green businesses that do not harm nature are the specifics offered by the new platform for development of small craft businesses, “Esnaf”. It is a social enterprise that strengthens the vulnerable categories, contributes to an equal society, creates employment opportunities for vulnerable citizens, strengthens the skills and capacities of artisans and all who want to bring their hobby to a professional occupation.

“Esnaf” was founded by the Institute “Creative Macedonia” and is an online platform for the promotion of handicrafts, but there is also a physical space, a store in the center of Skopje. What sets it apart from other creative platforms is the way it combines business and social equality. The founder, Izabela Sokolovska says that the idea came to her two years ago, when she started working for “Creative Macedonia”. She saw the challenge of artisans in how and where to sell their products.

It started with an idea that had been simmering in my head for a long time. When you are a craftsman and when you work with creative people for a long time, you know from firsthand their demands, problems, needs. The world is moving forward, the internet is more than beautiful people and everything that is bought, sold, advertised – is there. Here we are, a country that is rich in culture and tradition, authentic crafts, unique handicrafts and all that remains only on our soil” – Sokolovska explains about the birth of “Esnaf”.

She adds that bazaars are a great opportunity where new craftsmen and artisans have the opportunity, in addition to the chance to sell, to meet other artisans who rule this world well and learn a lot from them.

In all bazaars, fantastic collaborations and networking are born between all of them. But they are not enough for their maintenance or survival. Therefore, I believe in “Esnaf”, a platform that unites all of them and will become the main link with their customers – explains Sokolovska.”Esnaf” is a combination of humanity, tradition and the future in which the life stories of many people and their wonderful handicrafts are intertwined.

It was founded by a girl with incredible energy, great desire and commitment to convey the message, which is very powerful. Therefore, with the right support, there is no room for failure. What sets it apart from all others is precisely that the “Esnaf” is the basis for encouraging the development of individual social enterprises and for the faster development of small crafts, which is of particular importance. At the same time, it carries a deeper mission, which touches the art, tradition, history and promotion of the values ​​of our country.

Written by JUMP Team

22 September 2021

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