Haiti Design Co. is a community-based nonprofit dedicated to creating sustainable development through design, training, and job creation for underserved communities. The organization’s mantra comes from an old Haitian proverb that means “Many hands make the load light.” Haiti Design Co. features three teams — leather, jewelry, and sewing teams. In addition to these in-house teams, Haiti Design Co. has five branches in an Artisan Incubator program, which helps independent artisans. The organization and community development committee provide resources such as healthcare and educational seminars on leadership development training and mental health awareness.
Around 45 women and 15 men who have experienced vulnerable situations in life are working in-house at Haiti Design Co. The talented artisans practice different types of techniques such as jewelry making, weaving, sewing, and tailoring.
In the beginning, the leatherworking team members called themselves “Ekip Solid” or “Solid Team.” This title continues to be appropriate for the talented group of artisans. The leather is locally sourced from a family-owned tannery within the country, and the group specializes in durable, full-grain, and vegetable-tanned leather.
More than 24 women at Haiti Design Co. are part of the group’s sewing team. The talented artisans create beautiful products such as handbags, soft leather goods, and homewares. Textile manufacturing does not occur within Haiti, so the denim and canvas pieces that Haiti Design Co. artisans use to make products arrive from the Dominican Republic. Haiti Design Co. aims to maximize the sustainability and the impact behind these handmade products.