Trove is so excited to now be partnering with a solar powered ethical factory in Haiti! In March 2020, one of the factory owners, Julie, reached out to potentially partner together. The factory already had designs ready. They just wanted to spread their customer reach. As you know, a wider customer reach, means more jobs for men and women in Haiti. In just a few short months, I have come to love the team in Haiti and am excited for you to be able to meet the owners and purchase their gorgeous designs.
Here is their story!
In January 2010, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck 16 miles outside Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince. All hospitals, even the Doctors Without Borders hospital, were severely damaged. With the Haitian government estimating over 326,000 deaths and 1 million people displaced, relief workers from around the world rushed in to help and many around the world donated to make sure Haitians had their basic needs met. This is when a trained disaster relief worker, Julie, hopped on a plain headed for Port-au-Prince.
After days of volunteering, a woman tapped Julie on the shoulder and said, “White lady, I don’t want any water, but I need a job.” This sparked a change in Julie and started her journey in Haiti beyond relief work.
Jolina, a Haitian woman, had lost her home and small business in the earthquake. With a tent, donate by relief workers, she started an orphanage for children who had lost their parents in the disaster. Supplies were running low and she knew a paycheck was the only way to provide for the children.
This is when two world-changing women, Jolina and Julie, came together in friendship and entrepreneurship. The same thought kept them both up at night, how to create jobs in Haiti. They had many discussion on how to provide dignifying work for women and men in Haiti. During one conversation, Julie remembered how creative Malawians made shoes from recycled tires. Jolina jumped for joy, because there were tires everywhere in Haiti and she used to work in a sewing factory.
With a passion to take back everything the earthquake stole, Jolina and Julie, who had no idea how to make footwear, began an amazing journey together. 10 years later, they are now best friends and business partners, running a sustainable solar powered shoe factory. Their ethical factory employs women and men. Employees earn a livable wage, have access to health insurance, maternity & paternity leave, and paid vacation days.
Your purchase matters! Jolina and her staff in Haiti take great pride in their work and they are so excited to share their craftsmanship with our Trove family.