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The U.S. and Switzerland Partner with Alay Ishker Ayimdary to Create Jobs and Support Kyrgyz Traditional Artis
August 19, 2021


Daroot-Korgon District, Chon-Alay region, Kyrgyz Republic – On August 18, 2021, the Alay Ishker Ayimdary Public Association organized an official ceremony for the expansion of their production of wool and handicrafts in the Alay and Chon-Alay region. The production is supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation in the Kyrgyz Republic.

USAID’s Enterprise Competitiveness Project’s support enabled Alay Ishker Ayimdary to include more women artisans from the remote areas of the Alay and Chon-Alay regions in their business. USAID provided wool handling equipment to help automate wool processing, reduce production costs, and increase quality, helping to make their production more profitable. Alay Ishker Ayimdary also received equipment for wool cleaning, wool processing, and felt making from the Bai Alai Project,implemented by HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation. Alay Ishker Ayimdary invested in repair to provide comfortable working conditions for their artisans.

“With USAID support we are creating jobs for 54 local women from remote Alay and Chon-Alay regions. Our mission is to support local talent and create economic opportunities”, says Zhibek Turatbekova, Executive Director of Alay Ishker Aiymdary Public Association in Chon-Alay branch.

Currently, Alay Ishker Ayimdary is one of the biggest employers in the remote Alay region, a four-hour drive from Osh city. The association engages local women artisans in producing carpets, home décor items, felt rugs, and handicrafts. These products are sold across Kyrgyzstan at tourist stores and via the association’s social media pages.

“We’re proud to provide grants for organizations like Alay Ishker Ayimdary, who are creating new jobs and economic opportunities for Kyrgyzstani women to earn an income””, said Keith Simmons, USAID/Kyrgyz Republic Acting Mission Director. “But this project is special, because it is not just about jobs, but the promotion of Kyrgyz national heritage – shurdaks, kalpaks, and chepkens.”

The USAID Enterprise Competitiveness Project is a $23 million investment implemented over five years. The project works with small and medium businesses in the fields of textiles, food production, agriculture, IT, finance, and others to help expand their production and sales, leading to job creation in Kyrgyzstan. The program has already provided support to more than 90 businesses across the country.

For more information on this project, please contact Zhyldyz Niiazalieva, Communications Advisor of USAID Enterprise Competitiveness Project, zniiazalieva@ecp-kyrgyzstan.org, phone: +996 (770) 808 063.