And we have lift-off!
I'm Carina and the launch of Finders and Makers is the realisation of a dream. It’s been an ambition of mine for such a long time, to create a business that provides opportunities to give back in meaningful and sustainable ways.
The desire began years ago and grew more as I traveled to off-the-beaten-track destinations. I’m not sure if it was the poverty I could see firsthand, or the people, constantly working long hours and still struggling to make a decent living. The levels of inequality with regard to basic needs such as shelter, clean water, food, sanitation, healthcare and education have always filled me with a sense of frustration and injustice.
I'm an educated woman, so I knew there weren't going to be any easy solutions, but I felt sure there had to be a way I could do something that would make a difference. So forging ahead, I decided to start where my biggest passion lies: empowering women in small business.
I wanted to help women make a start as entrepreneurs, because just as they are capable of the biggest change and impact, they also experience the highest levels of disadvantage. The multilayered nature of their daily routines can be extremely challenging - whether it be rearing children in poverty, struggling with literacy or the endless responsibilities around domestic duties, the farm or maybe community and cultural expectations. But it has been shown time and again that women make the biggest impact when they earn their own money. Women empower women and their children, extended families and communities benefit greatly when they are at the helm of their own businesses and earning income.
Finders and Makers is about reaching out to those women who are starting out, those who are making progress and the small minority who have already proven their worth. Finders and Makers supports women in business by collaborating with them, finding opportunities for them and developing their businesses into sound income producing ventures.
From the market perspective, we are also committed to educating consumers that we all have a choice where our purchasing decisions are concerned. By asking questions about how our products are made - from ethical gifts to clothing to women's accessories - and making conscious purchases based on those answers, we move one step closer to building a stronger industry of ethical fair-trade, preventing us from further inadvertently exploiting those most vulnerable.
Although this dream started many years ago for me, the actual journey to this point started late last year, when I landed in Delhi. Despite all of my ideas and planning, I arrived to a sea of small and large businesses and a strong sense of resistance. I could tell immediately that I was not the first middle aged white woman wanting to save the world that had approached them. I continued on though and very morning I regrouped, refocused on my purpose and moved onto the next business that may have the potential for a collaborative partnership.
What many of them didn’t know is that I wasn’t going to back down from my purpose. I have no intention of trying this out to 'see how it goes'. This is a plan for the long haul - to 'embrace the unexpected and ensure there is an impact’ kind of journey.
So far it has been hard work, long hours and a very steep learning curve. I’ve met talented, kind and trusting people who have opened their homes, families and businesses to me and embraced Finders and Makers with equal enthusiasm. I’ve painstakingly picked out the most wonderful items, all so beautifully made and I can’t wait to share them all with you. I hope you enjoy the journey with me and feel part of this adventure.
Welcome to Finders and Makers - it’s nice to meet you
Visit us at www.findersandmakers.com