When fashion and philanthropy fuse together seamlessly, it’s a beautiful thing. Which is why I commend designers that partner with charity organizations to raise money for beneficial programs. Designer Nicole Miller partnered up with a women’s organization, Indego Africa, to create gorgeous African vlisco print fabric bangles, that launched last Thursday with a fete in the Nicole Miller boutique in Soho. The bracelets, which sell for $25 for a set of three, are just another way Indego Africa, along with Nicole Miller, is bringing to the forefront, the need for more skills training and empowerment programs in Africa.
Living in the United States has afforded me many luxuries beyond measure; a blessing I count each and every day. As a Ghanaian-born and American bred woman, I’ve seen first hand the difference work can make in the lives of people. In Africa, a majority of families live in poor conditions on a minute fraction of the salaries Americans make. Those living in poverty in Africa, and many parts of the world, are very resilient, resourceful and possess a strong entrepreneurial spirit. To feed their families, women use their skills to create handwoven baskets, jewelry, clothing, shoes and more, to sell at the local market. Though this is a great income generator, the real money is in being able to sell their items at higher and competitive prices in the Western hemisphere.
Indego Africa, an organization that partners with women artisans in Rwanda to sell their goods to high end retailers in the United States, is helping empower women in Africa to thrive on their learned artisan skills. They sell contemporary accessories and home decor products online and in retail stores with 100% of its profits going to the women in Rwanda. It’s a long term skills training program that has helped fuel the entrepreneurial spirit of the women in Rwanda and turned them into profit making business women.
To find out more about Indego Africa or to buy the Nicole Miller x Indego Africa bracelets, visit: http://www.indegoafrica.org/