It's been five years since I launched my own fair trade company, Sandpiper Imports! It's definitely been a roller coaster ride but I've never doubted that the decision to connect my previous retail management experience with my belief in fighting for social justice was the right one. It has been incredibly meaningful to build positive, cooperative relationships with Nyoman (founder) and his team of talented artisans in Bali, Indonesia. It is a privilege for me to share Nyoman's story of growing up as a child laborer and pivoting from that rough experience to instinctively start his own silversmith business based on fair trade principles because, in his words, "it was the right thing to do." His gratitude for the hard work of his team, for the customers who buy their beautiful jewelry they create, and to his family for their support as he followed his dream is summed up in the name of his company - Suksuma - Balinese for "thank you."
Chicago Fair Trade gives me the support, mentorship, and opportunities I need to continue to provide economic sustainability for my artisan group and their families. Your support during this campaign is impactful in so many ways: to local women-owned small businesses, to Chicagoland consumers seeking to make socially conscious choices in their purchases, and most importantly to hard working artisans across the globe striving to earn fair living wages that support their families in safe and dignified environments. Pete and I have donated $100 to this campaign because we believe so strongly in the mission of Chicago Fair Trade. Thank You for making a difference!