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As part of its corporate and social responsibility, APRIL Group establishes partnerships with local communities to provide community empowerment and foster self-reliance.

APRIL implements community development programs in this way to help alleviate poverty and improve quality of life, thereby supporting several of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDGs).

The company runs a Small and Medium (SME) Development Programme, with the aim of supporting local entrepreneurs by providing them with technical and financial expertise.

In 2013, APRIL began running its batik programme (as part of the SME development progammes) in Pelalawan Regency of Riau, Indonesia. Batik, a quintessential Indonesian product, is dip-dyed colourful cloth carrying design motifs. The intricate wax motifs are either drawn on by hand or printed on with copper stamps.

Under APRIL’s batik programme, housewives in Riau who live around APRIL’s operational areas are given the chance to earn a livelihood through batik making. Anyone interested in the batik programme is free to sign up, and participants who take part are able to learn how to make batik at Rumah Batik Andalan (a cooperative supported by APRIL), or to further hone their batik-making skills.

Following their training, the women may opt to stay on as members and work on a permanent basis at Rumah Batik Andalan - making batik full-time - or leave to start their own batik businesses.

APRIL has trained close to 70 women under the batik programme, of which 15 are currently full-time batik makers at Rumah Batik Andalan.

The batik-makers earn a steady monthly income of IDR 2.5 to 3 million on average at Rumah Batik Andalan.

APRIL and Rumah Batik Andalan help to market the batik which is created, which is usually purchased by the Indonesian government, the Indonesian Women’s Business Association (IWAPI), Riau Andalan Pulp & Paper (RAPP) employees, as well as guests of RAPP.

All revenue derived from the selling of the batik products goes back to the batik makers, or to Rumah Batik Andalan, for the buying of new batik-making materials including tools and ink.

In 2018, there are plans to set up similar batik programmes in the Kuansing and Siak regencies (also within the Riau province).

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