Among my favorite eye-opening books is Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide. Through extraordinary stories about the lives of impoverished women in Africa and Asia, the authors show that the key to economic progress lies in unleashing women’s potential. Throughout much of the world, the greatest unexploited economic resource is the female half of the population. This book clearly illustrated that the economic empowerment of women is the best strategy for fighting poverty on an international level.
This concept was put into action on a worldwide level in 2003 when Stacey Edgar created Global Girlfriend, an e-commerce boutique which helps women worldwide gain economic security while providing unique products and a simple way to help women in need. The fair-trade boutique offers a line of trend-setting, women-made, fair-trade products including stylish apparel, accessories and gifts with one purpose — helping women in need help themselves.
Global Girlfriend believes that economic opportunity for women holds the promise for real change in the world; because when women have an income, they reinvest in themselves and in their children’s health, education and nutrition, building stronger families and communities over time. Many women try desperately to make a living selling their artisan-quality goods but find that they have little access to market opportunities. Through fair-trade practices, Global Girlfriend brings the work of these disadvantaged groups directly to American shoppers.
What makes the site work so well is that everything on the site is something we’d love to buy anyway! The shop only selects well-crafted, on-style pieces, so shopping is a joy. Some of my favorites are:
Learn more about the evolution of Global Girlfriend, with started at the founder’s dining room table with a $2000 tax refund, in the book Global Girlfriends: How One Mom Made It Her Business to Help Women in Poverty Worldwide.