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How it started

In 2017 fashion designer Karim Adduchi wanted to engage migrant and refugee artisans in the design and production of his new collection ‘She Has 99 Names.’ He met Ann Cassano and Atusa Lalizadeh who both worked with refugee and migrant artisans.

About ten artisans and designers were engaged in the project, such as woodcarver Yaser Najjar, tailor Najib Nasif, as well as the migrant women organisation Samen Sterk Vrouwen West. Noticing the particular strengths and challenges of this group, they decided to take the project further. The result is World Makers Foundation, which supports refugee and migrant artisans, with an educational program, a support program for artisan-entrepreneurs, and workshops by artisans.

What we do

The World Makers Foundation is a community for migrated and refugee artisans. We  create design and community. We offer newcomer artisans a platform, creative collaborations and networking opportunities. We believe in the value of the expertise and heritage that artisans take with them when they arrive to the Netherlands, and that Dutch design will profit from their expertise. Creating together means making those much-needed connections in this diverse world.  

We offer:

  • Collaborations between professional designers and newcomer-artisans.
  • Craft workshops by newcomer-artisans to local designers and artists.
  • Awareness building: we make pockets of unappreciated immaterial heritage in our society visible and connect these to mainstream design.
  • A platform for newcomer-artisans: we make the expertise of new makers visible.
  • Community-building through crafts. We use crafts as means to connect where there is disconnect. Diversity and real inclusion means having difficult conversations. We use both crafts and constructive dialogue, such as Lewis Deep Democracy, to have these.