We ethically source products from artisan and producer groups that focus on skill development, including literacy programs, finance and vocational training, computer classes, and job training. This empowers artisans to attain sustainable employment and improve standards of living.
Lack of access to skill development and education opportunities can perpetuate poverty and inequality.
Ajiri is a Kenyan social enterprise that strives to create employment opportunities for women and to support the education of the country’s orphan children. The social enterprise works with farmworkers to source flavorful, hand-picked tea and coffee and supports the artisan women who design its recyclable packaging. Ajiri provides farmworkers with fair, living wages and access to beneficial workshops on topics ranging from literacy to nutrition.
stone-carving + inlay
Based in India, Asha Handicrafts empowers artisans who are socially and economically underserved. Asha Handicrafts is dedicated to the development of artisan groups and to trade, train artisans, and transform the lives of artisans. Artisans practice unique craft traditions, stone carving and inlay, to create marble boards and coasters. Stone carving can be traced back to the Mughal empire in the 17th Century and is found throughout northern India. Approximately 14 to 15 pieces are made daily with four artisans collaborating at a time.
EMBROIDERY + KANTHA STITCHING
Basha’s high quality, unique kantha products are handmade by strong women in Bangladesh, many of whom are survivors of human sex trafficking. The women complete a training and rehabilitation program prior to beginning work. Basha also provides educational opportunities including literacy and life skills programs. The artisans receive medical support, counseling, and day care.
Beyond Good is committed to creating dignified work opportunities for some of the most underserved groups in Madagascar. Approximately 70 percent of the cocoa in the world comes from Africa, while less than 1 percent of the world’s chocolate is made there. Beyond Good works closely with cocoa farmworkers to train them with essential skills and provides the necessary resources to make chocolate on the ground, from bean to bar, while they earn fair wages and work in safe environments.
farming + Cooking
Social enterprise Black Mamba connects with small-scale farmers and makers within Eswatini to create chili-based foods and fruit spreads using fresh ingredients. The producers often live within rural areas that are typically below the country’s poverty line; they work from their homesteads and supply produce to Black Mamba. By working with Black Mamba, they reach a greater marketplace and have access to essential resources including regenerative, eco-conscious practices, finance training, health programs, and community development workshops. The producers also have free training opportunities from Black Mamba’s partner NGO Guba, helping them grow the necessary skills to practice permaculture techniques and regenerative farming.
Bright Endeavors empowers young mothers from under-resourced communities. Through a job training program, the hardworking women are equipped with career skills, professional development, and a life-changing means to succeed in the workforce. They are empowered to build a bright career path, raise strong families, and create loving homes and communities.
corr - the jute works
CORR - The Jute Works empowers rural women in Bangladesh through handicraft production. The women have previously had limited access to formal education and now make beautiful products with local materials during time between household activities. CORR - The Jute Works not only creates market access, but it also provides job training and develops leadership skills.
EllieFunDay partners with an artisan group consisting of 40 women working as part of a sewing unit. Many of these artisans are single mothers; some of them have experienced a form of domestic violence or abuse. The artisans have access to job training, fair wages, dignified employment, healthcare, and educational resources.
Jewelry Making + Sewing
GAIA’s mission is to empower underserved refugee women living in Dallas, Texas through employment, encouragement, and dedication to their long-term success here in the United States. The refugee women transform vintage and artisan-made textiles into home and personal accessories, with a focus on sustainability and quality design. Through a living wage and continued training and development, GAIA’s goal is to help lead these resilient women to financial independence and self-sufficiency.
haiti design co.
EMBROIDERY, JEWELRY MAKING, LEATHERWORKING, + SEWING
The main mission behind Haiti Design Co. is to create sustainable development through design, training, and job creation; the nonprofit’s mantra comes from an old Haitian proverb that means “Many hands make the load light.” In a collaborative work environment, artisans have access to essential resources such as healthcare and seminars on leadership development training and mental health awareness.
HANDCRAFTING WITH ALPACA PLUSH
Inspired Peru is an artisan cooperative consisting of 35 artisans; the majority are widows and heads of household from indigenous communities in the Peruvian highlands. Ethically sourced, local alpaca wool is used to craft products, such as stuffed animals and accessories, that celebrate the artisans’ ancestral and cultural heritage. At Inspired Peru, artisans are empowered to transmit their traditional skills to future generations while expanding their business and leadership skills.
Located in the agricultural community of Njoro in Kenya, Kenana Knitters works with 580 artisans, the majority of whom are women. The artisans have had few income earning opportunities because of limited access to a formal education and their family responsibilities. By working with Kenana Knitters, they can earn a sustainable income, create long-term economic plans, and take care of their families with a flexible work schedule. Health clinics are run free of charge at Kenana Knitters. The workshop also offers community development workshops, household finance training, literacy programs, and health and hygiene programs.
Based out of El Salvador, Lula Mena is a microenterprise working with approximately 75 artisans between the ages of 23 and 65. The artisans live in underserved communities, and, by working with Lula Mena, they receive skills training and a fair income while maintaining job security. The designs are based on five principles: eco-friendly practices, handmade, fair trade, innovation, and women empowerment.
Made by DWC
Downtown Women's Center
Melt + Pour
MADE by DWC, the social enterprise component of the Downtown Women's Center in Los Angeles, California, provides intensive job training and transitional employment opportunities within product and retail environments. These programs give the essential skills and support needed to transition out of homelessness. Through dignified work, participants can rebuild their self-esteem and create safer, healthier futures.
Matr Boomie is a sourcing partner for socially and environmentally responsible products. The organization works with underserved individuals in India and strives to improve their economic and social standing by creating self-sustainable employment following fair trade practices. Matr Boomie partners with grass-root level NGOs and artisan cooperatives that train artisans to create high quality handmade goods. Matr Boomie empowers the artisans with market and fashion information, allowing them to create functional products. The artisans are encouraged to use natural fibers and recycled material as often as possible.
JEWELRY MAKING + LEATHERWORKING
Meyelo is committed to empowering artisans with sustainable income through their craft. By investing in small businesses in the Global South, Meyelo brings about social and economic change. The organization provides training programs in business practices to ensure the understanding of the global market. Meyelo works with Maasai villages to provide access to education, water, farming co-ops, and medical needs. By creating sustainable programs, Meyelo empowers women, girls, and their communities.
WET + NEEDLE FELTING
Empowered artisans in Nepal have created decorative garlands by hand while practicing intricate felt techniques. Many of them previously did not have access to a formal education and are women who are the sole providers for their families. Through this dignified work, they earn a sustainable income, work toward financial independence, and participate in essential resources including skill development opportunities, household financial training, literary programs, health programs, and training programs.
olive & annie
JEWELRY MAKING + LEATHERWORKING
Olive & Annie empowers Maasai artisans in Kenya as they work toward financial independence. It is a branch of the charitable organization She Matters, a community of survivors and advocates united against sexual violence. Through the group, these women have access to essential resources, including educational opportunities, community development workshops, and health programs.
JEWELRY MAKING + SEWING
Penh Lenh is committed to empowering strong young women in Cambodia. Penh Lenh, which means “whole,” helps to provide a high quality of education, vocational training, career opportunities and professional skills, and finance and budget training to these young women. They practice intricate jewelry making techniques including beading, string, and wire wrapping and sewing techniques with ethically sourced materials.
Based in Bangladesh, the community-based nonprofit organization Prokritee provides dignified work to more than 2,000 women in rural communities who are rising above poverty and supporting themselves and their families. To create these baskets, they practice a basket weaving technique that is local to the area and use locally sourced recycled iron and sustainable holga leaves. Prokritee prioritizes environmentally conscious practices that are good for people and our planet.
The women of Prosperity Candle have recently resettled from refugee camps and are building a brighter future for themselves and their families in the United States. Prosperity Candle is a social enterprise based in Massachusetts that invests in women entrepreneurs to help end poverty. Candles are the focus of this enterprise because candle making is a business a woman can start and expand in the safety of her own home with local materials, a critical element at times of unrest.
roots of creation
Roots of Creation is a fair trade organization based in Cape Town, South Africa. Specializing in brass products, artisans are recognized for their high quality and innovative designs. For more than 20 years, Roots of Creation has provided employment and job training in all stages of production: mould creation, creating molten metal, polishing products, electroplating, and shipping.
rose ann hall designs
Rose Ann Hall Designs employs artisans, many of whom are living with disabilities, to produce elegantly carved glassware. By promoting traditional Mexican arts, Rose Ann Hall Designs provides on-the-job training, income, as well as an outlet for artistic expression to individuals with few other opportunities. Rose Ann Hall Designs takes great pride in the uniqueness of its artisans and products.
farming + herb-blending
ShemeshFarms empowers young farm fellows living with diverse abilities in Malibu, California. The team of farm fellows and producers works in a supportive, inclusive environment with college students, interns, and volunteers. They can feel empowered to create unique spice blends while implementing eco-conscious practices and reaching a wider audience.
Based in the Republic of Guinea, TENSIRA is committed to creating sustainable income opportunities for craft communities within West Africa. TENSIRA blends Nordic design with traditional West African craftsmanship to create beautifully unique linen collections. The organization currently supports more than 60 full-time artisan collaborators at its workshop and provides job training and sustainable income.
The Little Market In-House Production Team
sugar scrubs hand-blended with all-natural ingredients
These sugar scrubs were handmade by individuals who are survivors of human trafficking and leaders in the anti-trafficking movement working to create resilient futures and raise awareness about human rights. Through a skill development program with The Little Market, they have access to fair wages and empowering work environments while skill building and dreaming up new opportunities. Each program participant has been involved with the Survivor Leadership Program at the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (Cast). A nonprofit based in Los Angeles, California, Cast offers survivors comprehensive services, including a hotline, housing, social/legal services, anti-trafficking advocacy training, and a platform to create change.