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When times are tough people want more for their money. Shoppers care about where products come from, how they were made and how they impact the planet, says Priya Haji (left), the 38-year-old founder of World of Good, which sells ethically produced handcrafted items from all over the world.
The idea was hatched during Haji's travels after graduate school. She met women who made beautiful things, from jewelry to baskets, and asked them how she could help. The answer was always the same: Create a connection with shoppers in the United States, and the proceeds could help the artisans' communities, schools, and homes. So Haji partnered with retailers like Whole Foods Market and eBay to sell her finds.
"We've created opportunities for thousands of marginalized artisans around the world to reach consumers who want to make socially responsible decisions when they shop," says Haji. At Worldofgood.com, each product includes a detailed description of where it comes from and how the sale will impact the person who crafted it. Haji also suggests that shoppers look for the Fair Trade seal, which verifies that items are made in safe conditions and have the impact they claim.
Want to get involved in the Do Good effort? Join our Do Good Group!
Originally published in Ladies' Home Journal, April 2009.