For a family who found themselves born in a culture that supported the concept of gender inequality; RugKnots is a testimony to what can happen if you dare to be different. Naheed Mir is from this family in Pakistan, whose father saw the need for his children to be independent educationally and thus able to propel them into the future to be productive members of society, not just for his boys, but also his girls. The complete independence he wanted was of such, he allowed his daughter to travel across oceans to experience another culture and to see why he was so far thinking unlike much other of his countrymen.
RugKnots grew from that seed that was planted many years before, and because of the educational opportunities which his daughter Naheed Mir received; she was able to take that vision and give it wings.
The burden of having to be the one to help his community was indeed his heartfelt duty; and the many lives he inevitably touched, was enough for his children to realize this was the legacy their father wanted to pass on to them. “Help one; to help another.”
RugKnots conception was done on an even grander scale because Naheed Mir realized the impact her privileged education was able to make. She saw what it was her father started and in view of this, wanted to continue that legacy. Many young women are able to have a vision of their own and likewise help others to live their vision. The phrase” The chain is as strong as its weakest link,” is indeed true of this family. The chain never broke, as it was allowed to become even stronger than when it was first forged. How incredible it is to be part of a revolution that has started in this little community, and know that what has begun is able to continue many years into the future.
Pakistan is a thriving country, and the government has begun to see what can happen when the stigma of gender is looked beyond, and help to grow the vision for women to foster meaningful and productive lives for them and their family. The road is long, but with many willing people of influence and determination, they are able to change the future of the people, especially women.
A powerful woman in any society is able to nurture as well as be a mentor, and this is what RugKnots is doing across oceans. Today, because of the vision of Naheed Mir, there is a school built from the proceeds of her vision to educate many generations of both boys and girls to see the need for gender equality. Dreams are no longer left to die, as they have the tools to enable the dreams to be a reality. This is because the tradition, of Oriental rug making, was used as a catalyst to forge the concept, and RugKnots became the product that was able to make the vision continue. Knowledge is indeed power!