Ethical Trading Company was founded in 2015 as a response to our founder traveling overseas and meeting organizations & business that were working to end human trafficking in countries like India, Nepal & Thailand. We wanted to provide a marketplace for the products they were making so they could then hire more people and get more people out of trafficking situations. Our very first partners were Beauty for Ashes, JeevanKala & Higher Ground Crafts. We continue to partner will all three organizations.
As we traveled to meet with suppliers and learned more about the issues surrounding trafficking, we decided that taking care of those who had been exploited was only a small part of the solution. In order to end human trafficking we had to create jobs in the very towns and villages where they come from. Most trafficking situations in Asia, Central America & Africa are caused by extreme poverty and lack opportunities. Mixed with a hindu or buddhist worldview where women and girls have very little human value beyond the provision they can bring to the family, a situation is created where many girls are at risk of exploitation.
We have found, by working with our partners, that if you can bring in jobs and subsequent foreign income to those towns and regions, then the chances of the girls being trafficking drops quite substantially. An example of this is in Cambodia where our essential oil bags and women's wallets are made. Sak Saum has been diligently creating jobs in a village known for generational prostitution and exploitation through western fashion houses. It is through the work they do that some of the villagers have been able to buy homes and provide for their children in sustainable and dignified ways.
Another example is Beauty for Ashes who provides jobs for women who have been sexually exploited. They reach out to women in the dance bars of Kathmandu who often don’t have any other opportunities to work and provide for their families. They bring these women into their community and help them with new skills, fair wages and dignified employment. Since we started visiting them in 2013 and working with them in 2015, they have grown in number and been able to work with more and more women. They have also started a small factory in one of the villages to helps stem the tide of women being exploited.
It is through partnerships like this - with businesses that are actively working to end human trafficking, not just being fair-trade, but actually working in areas of sexual exploitation or exploitation through the fashion & service industry that we will be able to see the end to human trafficking in some of the poorest areas of the world.
Thank you for joining us in this journey to rid the world of exploitation and give those most at risk ability to perform dignified work and make sustainable wages.Every purchase leads directly to an opportunity.