As I mentioned on Twitter the other day, I recently accepted a country director position with non-profit, Help International. My in-country assignment will begin in April and last for four full months. I am thrilled to share that I will be going to Peru- Piura, to be precise. It is here that I intend to deeply explore artisan livelihoods, from jewelers to weavers, and begin to mold the structure of my ethical fashion social enterprise. I am excited to get my feet wet and lead projects that will inform and inspire my cohort of volunteers. This includes projects that expand across disciplines- from education to sustainable agriculture, I plan for us to do it all, paying very close attention to the needs and desires of the communities which we aim to empower.
As I read about past country directors, I came across the profile of a young woman, Melissa Sevy. I was thrilled to discover a fellow ethical fashion missionary had participated in Help and was inspired to found a non-profit that would benefit the community in which she had worked. Melissa is a co-founder of Musana and was a 2009 country director in Uganda. She says,
“While in Uganda, I realized how limited I was in my thinking of the good I can do. I saw that even young, relatively inexperienced kids like us can make positive change. Maybe it is because we are young and a little crazy and daring. We must certainly learn from those who have been in the business about the sound principles of sustainable development; but also be innovative and creative in coming up with new solutions to age-old problems. I’m really hopeful about the future, the general goodness of people, and our generation’s ability to eliminate the effects of extreme poverty in the world.” - Melissa Sevy
The “casual but elegant” coral sands earrings, pictured above, are just one of many products available at the Musana online shop. They have me absolutely smitten! At $8.00 there is absolutely no reason to deny yourself and rest assured that you will be supporting the Lugazi community of female artisans 100%- literally 100% of the profits are reinvested into the community!