Mai Vietnamese Handicrafts: Crafting a Brighter Tomorrow for Disavantaged Women and Minorities in Vietnam

Mai Vietnamese Handicrafts (MVH) is a small and successful business, founded in 1990 by two passionate and energetic women. Building on the belief that social development is intricately tied to economic self‐reliance, Mai Vietnamese Handicrafts reaches out to artisans in underdeveloped areas and employs them as producers. Besides being the primary marketing agent for neglected women in rural areas, MVH is also actively involved in product development, marketing activities and design to offer quality, environmentally friendly and trendy products.

The company has set up a decentralized network of 21 producer groups operating mainly in the Southern provinces. The network counts 1,101 artisans, 70% of which are women. Each group is specialized in a range of products, which they sell and deliver to MVH. The company, as a trading agent, negotiates with international clients and ensures the conditioning, trading and shipping of the items. As a member of the Worldwide Fair Trade Organization, MVH trades handicrafts produced by a network of artisans in small remote villages.

MVH has partnered with the below to benefit their business:

  • Ten Thousand Villages and Mennonite Central Committee (MCC)sponsored the
    participation of MVH at a handicraft fair in Hanoi and a study tour afterwards in Thailand. MCC also sent a marketing consultant to assist the association in trading efforts.
  • The World Fair Trade Organization and other foreign trading partners: as customers, providing guidance and advice to the business. Relations with MVH are both transactional and collaborative. As a member of the World Fair Trade Organization, MVH gets access to a platform of information and relevant partners and customers.
  • VCCI (Vietnamese Chamber of Commerce and Industry) as facilitator, giving
    information and assistance to MVH on a collaborative mode.

Further information


Partnership types

Doing business with the poor

Regions / countries / territories

Asia: Vietnam

Global issues

Job creation and enterprise development; Gender issues

Business sectors

Manufacturing; Retail trade