Chekutty – The Dolls that Survived the Floods
ചേക്കുട്ടി – ചേറിനെ അതിജീവിച്ച കുട്ടി
The child that survived the mud (Floods) – This is what Chekutty means. When Kerala was immersed in the floods in 2018, the Chendamangalam Handloom Wevers’ Co-operative Society faced a massive loss. Many workers lost their jobs, the machines were all destroyed and the garments were smeared with mud and rendered absolutely useless. This enabled the birth of Chekutty – A doll
The workers were taught how to make this tiny doll using the upcycled materials that were ruined by the floods and they were sold for a meager 25 bucks. A saree worth Rs. 1300 was used to make around 360 dolls earning about Rs. 9000 per saree. In this manner, the lives of the workers, the loom and machines were all retrieved. Chekutty become a symbol of survival.
Here are some things you need to know about Chekutty:
- No two chekutties are same. They are made by different people in different ways. Some have marks, dirt and scars and this is representative of each of us, humans. We have our fair share of dirt and scars. But we’ve survived them all.
- Chekutty can be used as a keychain, or to adorn walls, car, bags and so on. You can find new ways to use Chekutty. You can even gift her to a friend as a symbol of strength.
- Now that the losses have been eliminated, the dolls are still in making. A part of these proceeds are given to the under privileged. Right now, the inmates of Institute of Palliative medicine , Kozhikode will get Rs. 5 for each chekutty sold.
- A Psychiatrist is using Chekutty as an example to stop children from committing suicides. A doll made from dirty clothes, having scars and stains and yet beautiful gives the message that things need not be perfect and that there are simple solutions to huge problems. (Source: Asianage)
- Now Chekutty has become a mascot of the newly emerged Kerala. They depict every Keralite that survived the flood.
If you wish to buy chekutty, go to their website and you can buy them in lots of 20. Here’s the link – Chekutty Online.
Gift a Chekutty of hope today to someone. I bought 4 for myself!