Why iyak was founded
iYak was founded in order to address some of the following social issues prevalent in local nomadic communities:
- Employment issues: More than 90% of nomads have not received formal schooling. Because of this they have no opportunity to gain employment in government offices and do not have the relevant work experience to get better jobs.
- Financial self-independence issues: Without stable employment, many nomads do not have the means to survive in the city and thus are unable to live independently.
- Language and communication difficulties: Most nomads cannot speak Chinese, which makes it the largest obstacle to finding employment. The usual places where women are able to find employment are in construction sites and as staff in restaurants and hotels. However, they are often unable to reach a qualified level of communication in Chinese.
- Cultural gap issues: The livelihoods and customs of nomads are thousands of years old. They bring these ways of life with them when they move into the cities, which cause city residents to regard nomads as lacking quality and concepts of hygiene. However, for many generations they have lived in environments that did not allow for bathing and other practices common in urban areas.
- Self-protection issues: When moving to the cities, women in particular encounter all kinds of people. However, they lack sexual health knowledge, which leads to them contracting sexually transmitted diseases, HIV/AIDS, etc. Another problem is that nomads have very little understanding of the law and legal knowledge. Because of this, when they are in the cities, they inevitably get entangled in situations that they never understood were against the law.
- Yak down resources: The yak down market has been completely monopolized by non-local people and local nomads are unable to reap the benefits of profiting from yak down. This has discourages nomads from collecting yak down.