Asia Giving Back Journal Photography

A Day In The Life of a Cotton Worker in India

Hi Dame Travelers! I’m Jaz, founder of blog The World Wide Tribe and I’ve been in India for a couple of months to consider people and the planet in everything we do.

The local ladies had to help me get dressed every morning as putting on a 9 metre long sari is not so easy by yourself! The village ladies tie theirs in special way so they can also use it as a pouch to store the cotton as they pick.

Picking cotton was hot, hard, but therapeutic and satisfying work and we were rewarded with an amazing lunch of rice, dahl (lentil curry) and chapattis (bread) eaten with our hands in the field.

It was impossible to keep up with the villagers as they pick cotton at a ridiculous speed but I gave it a good go (although the villagers laughed at my measly pile at the end of the day!)

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After it is picked, the cotton is transported on a huge truck to the cotton gin where it is cleaned of all impurities (things like coloured threads from sari’s and bits of leaf and seed.)

I had a lot of fun here jumping into giant piles of cotton from the top of a fork lift truck! I’ve never seen so much cotton!

After being cleaned, the cotton is taken to the factory where it is spun into yarn then woven or knitted into fabric, and finally stitched into garments!

Whilst here I was lucky enough to stay in the labour house alongside the 350 girls who work in the factory. I had a great time here eating, sleeping and dancing with the girls! They henna’ed my hands, plaited my hair and taught me amazing hindi dance routines! They even squeezed together in their beds or joined their friends sleeping on the floor to make sure I slept well (until the alarm went of at 5am! I felt very looked after!

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Be conscious about where you buy your clothes as you can be a part of the change. Lets move away from sweatshops, pesticides and child labour and look to a more ethical future together!

Lots of love, Jaz



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  • Torri February 9, 2015 at 5:12 pm

    Great delivery. Solid arguments. Keep up the great work.

  • this guy February 25, 2015 at 4:20 am

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you writing this post plus the rest of the website is also very good.

  • Donna Wanderlust March 7, 2015 at 2:48 am

    This is a great article, i would love and intend to work on a project like this when i travel to india next year. Keep up the good work and spread the word about conscious and sustainable fashion.

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