Artisan cooperatives are an essential part of SHARE’s mission. In a cooperative environment, each artisan is supported in her quest for economic security and personal fulfillment, in an atmosphere of mutual support and acceptance. The cooperative organization allows the women to participate in all aspects of the business, and leadership roles are rotated to give different women the experience of coordinating the group’s decision-making and social programs. In the process, each finds a role that satisfies her particular talents and abilities. The artisans can develop at their own pace; no one is expected to be an instant entrepreneur or put under immediate pressure to handle complex finances. Some of these women had never been to a bank or taken a bus alone, but through SHARE’s leadership training and the guidance of fellow cooperative members, they quickly learn to navigate the business world as well as the city, and become more self-confident and self-reliant.
SHARE's artisans are organized into ten cooperative groups: