5 steps to a (more) plastic free office (+tips)

5 steps to a (more) plastic free office (+tips)

Today, as I prepared to post this, I realized I hadn’t prepared for lunch. So I ordered from a restaurant that I know uses eco-friendly packaging. Unfortunately, the delivery service put the order in a plastic bag. As I walked back in from collecting my lunch from the driver, three of my staff immediately pointed at me and shouted: Plastic bag! Pay 500 riel! We all laughed as I pulled out my wallet and put the money into our Plastic Shamming Box, for offenders such as myself. 18 months ago, this would have been impossible, with the office mostly swimming in single-use plastic. So how did we achieve our (mostly) plastic free office? Last Plastic Free July we committed as a team to becoming a plastic free office. Two interns from PSE’s environment program had just joined us for the summer and they were super eager to share what they had learned at school with our staff. Our young and brave interns gave a presentation on the plastic issue in Cambodia and led a discussion on how to avoid the Five Big Bad Ones: Styrofoam, plastic water and drink bottles, take away cups, straws and plastic bags, with lots of data on just how staggering the use of these is in Cambodia. It’s been one year now and what can we say about our success? Using no actual scale or measurement tool at all, I’d give us an 88% or A score for how far we have come to becoming a plastic free office. So how did we do it? Read below to learn about the steps we took, the...
10+ ways to use Rainbow Set for Skills Development

10+ ways to use Rainbow Set for Skills Development

A fairly handmade plastic free-toy for all stages of a child’s development Children are really, really good at playing. And there’s good reason to let them play: it’s a big part of how they learn and develop skills. From the earliest days of their tiny lives, babies are observing and taking in the world, neurons firing away, making connections and growing their brains. As they grow, they start reaching for objects, delight in new sounds and textures and begin to experiment through play. “Play is the highest form of research,” goes the famous quote, misattributed to Albert Einstein. Our Rainbow Stacking Set is the perfect plastic-free toy for such play/childly research. Our beautiful and fairly handmade Rainbow Stacking Bowls and Balls have sticking power. From early activities to build hand-eye coordination for a young baby to problem solving games for the pre-schooler, our Rainbow Stacking Set grows with your child. This simple, plastic-free toy has so many uses and is so adaptable to different stages, it is sure to become an integral part of your child’s play sessions for years. Rainbow Stacking Bowls & Balls activities for your baby Our Rainbow Stacking Set is safe for even the newest member of your family. With its bright colours and soft, squishy textures, it will enchant and entertain your baby from the moment she gets her hands on it. And unlike others, this plastic-free toy not bad for the planet! Babies start learning from the day they are born. From 4 months, babies start to reach out their hands, trying to grasp objects. A ball from the set is a perfect squishy and textured...

How you can support us during Covid-19

Our way of life is changing… March 29, 2020 Greetings from Phnom Penh! There seems to be no news these days, but Covid-19 news. We check online what is happening in our area, our country and around the world too often, our minds and hearts are full of sadness, grief, anxiety, uncertainty. The numbers of infected and dead keep going up and the shut downs are spreading. Economies are grinding to a halt borders are closing. But we are not giving up! Keep reading to learn how you can support Cambodia Knits through this. Cambodia currently has at 104 cases officially, but it seems testing is not widespread and we have anecdotal evidence that more are possibly infected. At CK we are deeply worried about our knitters and the country as a whole. The health care infrastructure here is at a fraction of the capacity and skill that is needed. Should an outbreak on the scale of what is happening in the USA or Italy occur here, it would cause untold pain and suffering. Social distancing is a privilege I was struck by something I read yesterday. It was a message being shared on FB written by a doctor in India: social distancing is a privilege (full text below). I realized how lucky I was to be able to stock up on canned goods, pasta and to keep ordering in groceries. I have a fast home Internet connection. I have running water and health insurance and a bed and towels and Lego to entertain my child and savings and am generally healthy thanks to my economic position, and I know my family and I will get through...
Happy Earth Day from Cambodia Knits!

Happy Earth Day from Cambodia Knits!

Today is Earth Day,  the world largest environmental movement, it is a day of political action and civic participation. People march, sign petitions, plant trees, clean up their towns and roads. In Cambodia, the rapid economic and population growth is leading to significant environmental pollution. Economic development activities have generated major environmental consequences, including air pollution, water pollution, noise pollution and solid wastes. To support this movement, there we are implementing new rules at the workshop in Phnom Penh: encouraging our staff to stop using single-use plastic.  We’re already not using plastic for packaging our products and for shipping. Now, at the office, we are not allowed to use plastic at all No more bags or styrofoam boxes for lunch, no more plastic bottles. We try to replace them with reusable things, like a Tupperware box for lunch or your own bag. All the best to our headquarters team for making these small but important efforts!  ...
Team Building Friday Fun

Team Building Friday Fun

Taking time out from regular work day busy-ness and reflecting on how we work together is important in any organization. We’re committing the last Friday of every month to spend a couple hours together to “build our team”. As we are three brands sharing a workspace and often collaborating and supporting each other, we’ve brought together all the wonderful women who work here from Cambodia Knits, Fair Weave and Khmer Creations, or an afternoon of fun team games. The main activity was a challenging one. In groups, staff had to recreate a lego (well actually duplo, but they’re just bigger lego) creation. The model was hidden from view however, and only one member of the team was allowed to observe it and try to remember the construction. Once all members felt confident they knew how to arrange their pieces, they worked together (cooperatively, collaboratively) to recreate the model. But once they had started they were not allowed to go back and look! How did the teams do? Have a look at the final pictures below. Looking forward to next month’s team...
Cambodia Knits launches a Kickstarter campaign

Cambodia Knits launches a Kickstarter campaign

We’re launching a new product line at Cambodia Knits and we need your help. After discovering 100% cotton yarn in delicious colours, but too thin to knit with, we decided to cross over into crochet. Although we are Cambodia Knits, we believe in staying flexible and making the best use of what’s available to us. And in this case, a new batch of yarn has motivated and inspired us to try something new. You can find our Kickstarter project page by clicking here. There’s lots of information on what we’re doing, where and how, along with a short video (which you can also watch below). Most importantly, you can see our upcoming range of crochet critters and if you pledge early enough, you can even get one in time for Christmas. About Kickstarter Kickstarter is a crowdfunding website where anyone can post a creative project that needs, well, a kick start. Anyone, like you, can pledge toward the project goal. Kickstarter is all-or-nothing, meaning we need to reach our goal to receive any money that has been pledged. We’re doing great so far, but we hope to exceed our goal of CAD$3000 and add Stretch Goals and more rewards along the...
Training at Trapeang Anh Chan

Training at Trapeang Anh Chan

Since September 20th, CK staff and knitters have been training at the relocation site at Trapeang Anh Chan (TAC). They have been teaching knitting and crochet skills to up to 25 participants. There are a core group of 15 that attend regularly and will likely join the CK team as producers at the end of this month. Learning how to chain on the first day   Trainees have been learning crochet in the morning and knitting in the afternoon. They started with simple crochet squares and moved onto our new animal range during the morning crochet lessons and during the afternoon knitting lessons, they have been learning how to knit our magnet range. Some people prefer one skill over the other, or are just more adept at one or the other and we hope learning both crochet and knitting allows more of the community members to join us. The students are doing impressively well! By the end of the first week several had completed our new elephant pattern and in the second week, several were able to knit our magnets to CK quality standards. In the final two weeks of training, our teachers will assess the participants to determine which skill is more suitable for them and by November our team will have grown.  ...
Yarn donation from Australia

Yarn donation from Australia

CK would like to send out a big thank you to Ms. Kim Coogan, who brought over a large donation of yarn from Australia this past week. She lugged several kilograms of yarn for us from Tasmania in her suitcase, all of which we can make use of. We are always thankful for yarn donations, which we can use for our products, for training or for sale to local knitters, with funds raised going back into CK. If you have yarn to donate, contact us at...

We're hiring

Cambodia Knits is looking for an Accountant/Stock person. Do you have the right skill and interest in helping provide employment in poor communities? Have a look at the Job Description and send your CV and cover letter to info@cambodiaknits.com.Click here to download. Deadline is March 29, 2013....
We’ve moved

We’ve moved

Cambodia Knits has moved office. We’re still inside of Netpro Cambodia and you can find us at House 116, Street 113. We’re just across the Toul Sleng Genocide Museum, almost opposite the former entrance gate. You can find us by looking for the bright orange gate....
Fun Knitting Pattern for Sale

Fun Knitting Pattern for Sale

Introducing our first ever knitting pattern: Twitter.  Designer Thelma Egberts contacted us a few month ago and offered us this pattern to sell and raise money for Cambodia Knits.  Thelma is known in the knitting world for her very popular Dead Fish Hat, which was featured on Knitty and which you can find here.  You can also visit her website here, for more wonderful patterns. By buying this pattern, not only do you get to make this funky hat, but you are also supporting CK’s work in bringing employment to communities.  Funds raised from pattern sales go into our training program, enabling us to train more knitters and provide more jobs. It’s a win-win situation!  Buy the pattern today for only 4USD. Click on the PayPal button at bottom of the screen to make your purchase.     To buy this very fun Twitter knitting patterns, click on the PayPal link.  Once your payment is processed, we’ll email you the...
Magnet Dolls

Magnet Dolls

Last year, our friend and supporter, Veronica Sherman, asked us to re-design our monkeys to include long legs and magnetic arms.  With her guidance, we developed the long leg monkeys which were only available for sale with bags, also of her design.  The magnet monkeys proved to be very popular and she’s since given us permission to sell them independent of the bags.  And we’ve also tried a few other animals in a similar style. Welcome to the family, the Magnet Dolls: I think we need a better name than ‘Magnet Dolls’ and we’re open to your suggestions.  Post a comment and also tell us what you think about these little...
Onabee in Melbourne

Onabee in Melbourne

We haven’t posted this earlier, but since February, CK finger puppets have been available in Melbourne.  The wonderful Fiona Burnes visited our workshop back in January and gave a crochet lesson to our staff.  She loved the finger puppets she decided to stock them at her cute store in Kensington.  Have a look at her website or if you’re in Melbourne visit her store. At Onabee you can buy locally made Yarn for knitting crocheting and felting, hand printed fabric and locally handmade things. We also stock haberdashery and run craft classes Inspired by all the creativity and design of local people, Onabee brings it all into the one place to inspire you. Products Include: Heirloom yarns, needles & patterns Woolganics yarn Pear Tree Yarn, wool tops & patterns Birch Haberdashery Ink & Spindle fabric Pippijoe fabric Yardage Melbourne fabric Victoria Mason Jewellery Loope knitted goods Love Sandra Bowkett jewellery Ron D Swan bags The Rabbit & The Duck Silk Screens …….Plus lots more products… including Cambodia...
Another new shop for CK

Another new shop for CK

For all of you in Phnom Penh who like taking a walk along the Riverside, we now have a store selling CK products just there.  Welcome to the CK family V Silk.  The shop sells a variety of silks and other made in Cambodia products.  It’s at House #221 on Sisowath Quay, about 4 blocks north of the FCC.  Go and have a visit!...
Happy Silk

Happy Silk

Announcing a new sales locations for CK goodies:  Happy Silk. Happy Silk is located on Street 178, just down from the Riverside and around the corner from the FCC.  So you can get yourself a handful of finger puppets before heading upstairs for a drink while watching the sunset and playing with your new...

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