Non-profit retailer announces first-ever, national initiative to connect artisans from underemployed regions worldwide with eco-conscious consumers; holding in-store, interactive events to promote fair-trade and sustainable business practices
Leading fair-trade retailer and founder of the World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO), Ten Thousand Villages, announces the organization’s first-ever national corporate social responsibility campaign to further educate consumers about the company’s mission to strengthen artisans worldwide through fair-trade. The inaugural initiative, called Landscapes, promotes reforestation and marks the beginning of a larger, year-long campaign dedicated to highlighting like-minded charities across the country that embody Ten Thousand Villages’ commitment to fair trade, sustainability and social responsibility.
Various Landscapes events will kick off in select store locations nationwide on April 22 and 23, commemorating Earth Day. Ten Thousand Villages is partnering with the Arbor Day Foundation and has set a goal of planting 10,000 trees between April 21 and May 1 by collecting donations from customers. For every dollar donated, the Arbor Day Foundation will plant a tree in a national forest. Participating stores will offer shoppers various promotions, including refreshments, special product discounts, gardening demonstrations, interactive craft experiences and more.
The Landscapes launch will highlight the organization’s artisan groups committed to reforestation and the carefully-curated product line of the same name will include new, thoughtfully-made items that embody the colors and textures of the season, as well as the organization’s core values. For nearly 70 years, Ten Thousand Villages has built meaningful, long-lasting relationships with artisans around the world, teaching them valuable skills for employment in regions where underemployment is high. Additionally, all sales made on items sold online and in Ten Thousand Villages stores provides artisans with valuable resources such as healthcare, education and transportation, giving artisans and their families access to a higher quality-of-life.
“The Landscapes initiative will be an exciting, first-of-its kind program for Ten Thousand Villages,” says Pamela Raffensberger, CEO of Ten Thousand Villages. “We see this as being an immersive and experiential way for our customers to gain a deeper understanding for our organization, the artisans we work with around the globe, as well as the core values for which we stand.”
Ten Thousand Villages plans to launch numerous initiatives in 2016, with charity partners to be announced throughout the year. To learn more about the organization and to find a location near you, click here.
About Ten Thousand Villages
For nearly 70 years, Ten Thousand Villages has been establishing long-term buying relationships in places where skilled artisans lack opportunities for stable income. The commitment to support artisans around the globe is strengthened through fair trade compensation practices including cash advances and prompt payments. As the company continues to grow, Ten Thousand Villages has deliberately married the concept of fair trade with healthy and environmentally sustainable business practices. From store operations to product sourcing to marketing practices, Ten Thousand Villages strives to meet the “triple bottom line” of economic, environmental and social sustainability.
Founded in 1946, Ten Thousand Villages has grown from the trunk of founder Edna Ruth Byler's car to a network of more than 300 retail outlets throughout the United States. Ten Thousand Villages is an exceptional source for unique handmade gifts, jewelry, home decor, art & sculpture and personal accessories made by artisans in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East. One of the world's largest fair trade organizations and a founding member of the World Fair Trade Organization, Ten Thousand Villages strives to improve the livelihood of tens of thousands of disadvantaged artisans in 35 countries. Product sales help pay for food, education, healthcare and housing for artisans who would otherwise be unemployed or underemployed. For more information, visit tenthousandvillages.com.