Munir is headed by Munira Akilova (at left above), who has a passion for preserving and revitalizing the traditional patterns and ornaments from the Zerafshan River Valley of Uzbekistan and Tajikistan in designs for the modern woman. Each piece "has its own meaning." Her designs have received the UNESCO Award of Excellence and have been exhibited at international fairs and exhibitions. She works with a team of impoverished women from rural mountain villages in the Panjakent region of Tajikistan (just across the border from Samarkand) and in the villages surrounding Khujand, helping them to build a future beyond daily survival. Click here for more information about Munira and her Munir team.