The Fair Trade difference

11 Nov

In the last post I told you how we have partnered with a group of women artisans in El Salvador that are producing our new greeting card line, “Portraits of El Salvador”.

While our goal is to always get a fantastic new product to our customers, our perpetual purpose is to provide income and economic stability to women artisan groups, which, in turn, helps the groups expand and grow so that there can be more meaningful jobs for a greater number of women.

Elana and Guadalupe – sisters, friends, artisans.

For the women in El Salvador, expanding their artisan group is risky. It takes considerable time and resources to train the women and if they do not have a market for the product their investment can be lost.

To take that strain off our new partners, we have put in place a program to engender mutual trust. To demonstrate our commitment and to provide security to the women we have produced 50,000 packaging units that have been delivered to their region to be filled with their creations. Currently, there are 12 trained artisans, and our packaging represents well over a year’s worth of production. Our packaging commitment is the artisan’s security that Hope For Women will be a long-term partner. We anticipate that the group will have the confidence to double in size by 2009, creating life-changing work for more women.

I had the privilege of visiting El Salvador, meeting each of the women artisans and spending time with them and their families at their homes. They are an inspiring group – you can learn more about them on our website.

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