Introducing a group of world changers.
This is a community of visionaries and practitioners, all fueled by the desire to create positive social change in their communities through redemptive ventures. Journey with us as we partner with them.
Ruas is a handicraft business dedicated to empowering women artisans from rural, tribal communities in India to produce contemporary products using traditional embroidery methods, right from their homes. Dedicated to fair wages, co-design, and ethical practices, Ruas’s Shopify store has been among the top 20% of stores in India with no marketing efforts. Now Aditi wants Ruas to become a worldwide brand delivering the highest quality products.
Goh is passionate about both specialty coffee and improving the lives of his fellow villagers. Sirinya Coffee allows him to pursue both passions. As coffee producer for the company, Goh believes great coffee begins with the soil. He buys only the highest quality micro-lot beans, paying competitive prices to his producers and teaching them to use organic farming methods—practices that are good for the land, the coffee, and the farmers.
As director of Sirinya Coffee, Oil works with her husband Goh to market and sell their farm-direct coffee to customers around the world. They live with their daughter and families among generational coffee farmers in the hills of northern Thailand, most of whom are stateless and lack access to many opportunities. Sirinya is committed to transforming lives through sustainable work, education, and community support programs.
A former social worker, Suneli noticed that the pressure to support low-income households often falls on women, but there are few jobs available to them. She started Saladi Enterprises 16 years ago with a mission to empower women to be independent and provide for their families through the production of high-quality handicrafts. The company sells to fashion brands and plans to grow its capacity, expand its partnerships and employ 100 women
Divya’s family has farmed their land in the mountains of northern India for more than four generations. Due to lack of income opportunity for women in their community, Divya and her husband Stephen were inspired to train local women to create artisanal products from organic farm produce that was being wasted. They now employ 30 village women, enabling them to care for their families and mitigating the trend of migration to cities by creating work close to home.
India is seeing a demand for artisanal, preservative-free products. Himalayan Haat meets this demand by turning a low-cost commodity (farm produce) into high-value gourmet products, increasing income for farmers and encouraging them to return to natural, organic processes. The business already has a strong brand, but Stephen and Divya’s vision is to increase production, enabling them to grow and continue transforming lives in their village through opportunity.
J&M Pvt. Ltd.
J&M is reviving a traditional art form in India by using block-printing for its high-end products. Committed to ethical and transparent production practices, J&M has been recognized by brands such as TOMS and Noonday Collection for its dedication to creating an impact in the lives of its makers with training, fair wages, and benefits. Tsering’s goal is to scale the business so it can generate increased revenue and salaries for its makers.
Rebekah is a business consultant specializing in health food. She grew up in Mussoorie, India and completed her university degree in the United States. A trained chef, Rebekah became part of the founding team of Fabindia’s Fab Café, which has since opened 17 concepts all over India. In 2018 she and her sister Ariella launched Atmosphere Kombucha in New Delhi, India. Today, their kombucha is available in about 20 retail outlets and seven cafes in Delhi, and they want to grow the brand beyond its current market.
Ariella learned to brew kombucha when she was just 14. She went on to become a certified nutritionist and worked in the gourmet restaurant industry. In 2018 she and her sister Rebekah turned their passion for kombucha into a business, and Ariella left her job to focus on growing the Atmosphere brand. The sisters hire mostly women with disabilities or those who have not had access to jobs or education. Their goal is to teach useful skills and treat every employee with equal respect and dignity.
Seeing his generation abandon their rural communities for big cities inspired Zaan to transform his family’s scenic land into Magpie Farms, an eco-friendly agrotourism business. His high-altitude land is suitable for growing rare crops such as plum, Hass avocado and coffee. Zaan’s passion is to serve as a model for agroforestry and sustainable business initiatives in his community while encouraging young Thais to value stewardship.
Born to a family that struggled with poverty, Worn’s dream is to give people in rural Thailand the opportunity to become self-reliant. With a Ph.D. in textile development, his goal for Eco Creation is to produce plant-based leather using environmentally friendly production processes and natural polymers. This sustainable approach draws upon the textile skills and resources that are already present among Worn’s agricultural community in Thailand.
Inspired by the success of Taylor Guitars’ Ebony Project, Himalayan Tonewoods will partner with large instrument brands to ethically source tonewoods directly from indigenous communities in Thailand and India. This collaboration will improve both local livelihoods and the health of forest ecosystems. Surendher has experience in the musical instrument industry and believes business can be a valuable tool to transform communities.
Ally grew up in a Thai-Laotian community in the United States. After graduating from university, she developed a passion for textiles and ethical fashion while working for a fair trade subscription service. In 2017 she moved to Thailand, where she works alongside Thai locals to empower and support the sustainability of their ventures. Ally is working to launch her own venture designed to advocate Thai artisans and expose their products to the global market.
Nawang recovered from his own addiction 17 years ago and has spent the last 15 years working as a mentor for individuals recovering from addiction. Our only nonprofit venture in this cohort, Rewa is designed to provide exceptional rehabilitation services to its community in India. Nawang is committed to providing holistic treatment, a healing environment, and accessibility to all.
Nikhil has spent a decade mentoring young Tibetan men and women who have been, or continue to be, dependent on drugs and alcohol. He has also worked as a community development program director. Nikhil is able to relate to people on the margins because he himself has experienced hardship and poverty in his life. He is eager to partner with Nawang to provide grace-filled rehabilitation support to their community.
Bondü is a workshop in Chiang Rai, Thailand using the best Asian woods to produce high quality products. Ton’s goal is to provide work in his community, where lack of access to education and drug addiction are common. He wants to provide jobs to those who need them most—parents who cannot afford to send their children to school, and young adults who have not finished their education. Ton wants them to find value and purpose in the community.
*Due to the security issues, we cannot share photos or full details.
George learned the craft of papier-mâché through his mother’s family. As a young adult, George’s faith caused him to be rejected by his community, and life was very difficult for him and his wife. But his ability to make, sell, and teach the art of papier-mâché always enabled him to provide for his family. Then he met Chris, and their partnership will enable George to innovate his craft and provide opportunities for his community, even though they have persecuted him.
*Due to the security issues, we cannot share photos or full details.
Chris moved to India in 2014 with an engineering company but had a desire to start his own business. He met a local artisan named George, and together they started MK Handicrafts in the Himalayan mountains. The business produces papier-mâché products based on both traditional Himalayan patterns as well as original modern designs. Chris and George are seeking new Western markets for their fair-wage, locally sourced, ecologically responsible products.