(Houston, TX, USA)
This is Dou, who packages our products with exceptional care!
Hi There! I just wanted to share this little story with you, I will try to make it brief. It is about our own business, well you will see.
My fiance's brother and sister-in-law (Jacob and Carrie) moved to rural China to work in a foster home for special needs children. The work they do is amazing, but it is another story entirely. Suffice to say, they find donors to sponsor surgeries (and hospitals to do them pro bono) and they find the children families to love them. After seeing the immense poverty in their village, they started searching for a way to provide a sustainable pathway out of poverty, especially for women.
Two years after they moved to the village, Scarlet Threads was born. Scarlet Threads is a fair trade project devoted to empowering women through dignified employment, to providing a pathway out of poverty. Carrie approached a seamstress in the village, who sets her own wage and hours and works in the comfort of her own home, and they worked together to develop our first line of fair trade aprons. The line was completed in November of 2009!
With her earnings, our seamstress was able to purchase a washing machine - no small feet in a village where only 50% of residents have running water. We have since hired four local grandmothers who hand stitch our traditional Tiger Hats and another woman (Dou) who packages all of our products. Dou was able to pay her son's school fees with her new wages!
Our products have found their way into four different stores, and have found homes in 26 states! We've seen our online community and sales grow steadily. And we hope to be able to hire a manager from the village and another seamstress in the near future. Our ultimate goal is to provide counselling and job training to women in our village.
My fiance took me to China this past Christmas, where I fell in love with China, the village, the foster home, and Scarlet Threads. I have become their volunteer marketing and social media maven and am working hard to live up to the title.
I really hope that you like our success story (and I hope that there are many more to come from this neck of the woods)! Please visit our website (www.scarletthreads.org) and email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
We would love any advice you can give us as we search for stores who would be willing to purchase our products wholesale and other means of achieving sustainable growth!
Thanks so much for the opportunity to share our story!
PS In case you are interested in the foster home's work, visit www.newdayfosterhome.com. I fell in love with their formula project. They provide formula to other orphanages in rural areas that cannot afford infant formula. It is absolutely beautiful! Thanks again!