All posts by Mike

Last afternoon in India


This afternoon we sat on the rooftop of the building The Loyal Workshop is located in (look them up on Facebook).

Sarah & Paul chatted with us about what’s it’s been like for a young family coming to Kolkata 3 years ago, and the vision they have for this new Freedom Business and the transformation it is already having in the lives of some women from the nearby red light district.

Their new and emerging product line is very different to that of Freeset, and their launch date is only a week or two away.

We’ve meet some really inspiring people over these past few weeks. Our NZ Baptist workers in India & Bangladesh are doing amazing stuff.

Some random pics

Today we drove to the town of Sherpore (spelling?) where we (Freeset/NZ Baptists/OTBC) have signed a 5-year lease on an old cinema building in the centre of town that we’re turning into a fabric manufacturing plant to employ 70 women.

We then drove to a village where some of the women will come from. They showed us their silk worms in action.

We hung out with some great NZers – one who knows my father from 50 years ago!

It’s been another inspiring day.








Taxis and fabric

This morning we caught taxis from the BMS guesthouse at 5.45am to the Kolkata train station.


And here’s some fabric made at the new Freeset Fabrics – fabric made from scratch:


After a month of training they now have product to sell. They have about 6 looms at present. The plan is to eventually be employing 70 people in this Murshidabad region. Family poverty in this region is one reason girls are “sold” or sent to the city to work (trafficked into prostitution).

The FBI (Freeset Business Incubator) has a big vision of creating employment and community development in this region.

Again we have seen some inspiring work going on.

Tonight we had dinner in a literal Indian restaurant with some of the NZers living here in Berhampor. The Indian food was quite authentic. It was good to hang out with these people.

Today is also Simon’s 60th birthday: happy birthday Simon!!


70 years ago NZ Baptists started a hospital in Brahmanbaria. 20 years ago it was handed over to the Bangladesh Baptist Christian Fellowship (we visited the leaders yesterday) in partnership with NZBMS. Today there are (I think I heard) 125 staff. There’s a lot going on here, and a lot of history.