A Pandanus Weavers Coordination Centre and Plant Propagation unit at Vieux Grand Port
A Pandanus Weavers Coordination Centre and Plant Propagation unit at Vieux Grand Port
The project seeks to revive and revitalise Pandanus weaving activities in the South East of Mauritius to improve the livelihoods of marginalised weavers of the region. The coordination Centre and the Plant Propagation unit are part of Association des Artisans et Planteurs de Pandanus du Sud Est (AAPPSE) strategy in its quest to give more vitality to weaving activities in the South East. The Pandanus Coordination Centre would enable the association to closely monitor weaving activities of its members to guarantee the production and marketing of quality and innovated products from the South East. The Pandanus Utilis propagation unit at the centre would have strategic role to ensure that Pandanus Utilis population in the South East is increased and that sufficient raw materials (leaves) are available to weavers to meet demand with development in the sector. During the cultivation process focus would be laid on establishing plant cultural practices necessary for the production of quality leaves on which are hinged quality products. The propagation and planting of Pandanus Utilis plants in the region would also enable mainly women to maintain the biological diversity of their environment. Moreover the Pandanus Utilis plants would contribute to prevent of soil erosion and land degradation of the sloppy lands in the region during flooding periods. The centre would include a small museum to relate the 177 years of South East weavers’ history to local and foreign visitors.

Given the decline in Vacoas trade occupation it is vital to provide artisans the appropriate support to help them to develop their businesses in a more professional manner. The Vacoas artisans belong to the low income groups as 70 % of them earn an income from 200 to 4000 rupees (i.e. from US $ 6.25 to US $ 125) while 30% of them rely on their basic pension and widow’s pension to earn their living. It is thus critical that artisans who are mainly women get their living from the vacoas trade as an income-generating job. The coordination centre will be the appropriate place where the notion of quality will be integrated at all stages of the weaving process, a determinant factor that would lead to the production of quality standards for the different products. Based on the inner characteristics of the products, the plant and the region, a brand name would be produced. The Centre will facilitate the development of local and international markets for the different products to ensure sustainability of the sector.

The Plant nursery of the Propagation unit will ensure the regular production of Pandanus Utilis seedlings for cultivation on marginalised state lands of the South East region. This cultivation will help women to maintain and conserve biodiversity of their environment in addition to the production of sufficient leaves as raw materials. The risk of severe shortage of leaves is highly probable as demands for vacoas products are increasing with development in the tourist industry and due to the restraining use of plastic bags.

‘Learning by doing approach’ would be adopted to enable artisans to produce clean finishing products. Capacity building of artisans in managerial skills would continue to enable the association to soundly manage its different activities.

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Project Snapshot

Association des Artisans et Planteurs de Pandanus du Sud Est
Area Of Work:
Multifocal Area
Grant Amount:
US$ 48,065.00
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 32,742.02
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 26,544.91
Project Number:
Satisfactorily Completed
Project Characteristics and Results
Emphasis on Sustainable Livelihoods
It is to be noted that through this project, the artisans, who hail from very modest backgrounds, will be able to earn a living through the vacoas trade.
Gender Focus
The NGO that will undertake the project constitutes for the most part of women. These women will be largely involved in the promotion of the declining vacaos trade by creating handicraft products that will be offered for sale.


British High Commission

Grantee Contact

Mr Jean Pierre Marius


Margeot Lane, Kenya, Vieux Grand port
Grand Port ,

SGP Country office contact

Mrs. Pamela Bapoo-Dundoo
(230) 213 53 84
(230) 212 14 11


2nd Floor, Sugar Industry Pension Fund Building, 1 Remy Ollier Street
Port Louis, Mauritius

Country Website