Can you believe it has been two years since the devastating earthquake rocked Haiti? Two years later, and people are still trying to rebuild their lives, homes, and country.
Two years, and much of the aid for the country has moved on. There have been other natural disasters, and as much as people would like to help everyone, it just isn’t possible.
That is why the Heart of Haiti Initiative is SO important. The Heart of Haiti is a “Trade, Not Aid” initiative launched by artist and social entrepreneur, Willa Shalit, The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund and Macy’s. The sales of these works put real, sustainable income into the hands of the artisans who create them, changing their lives in remarkable ways.
I find the Heart of Haiti project to be empowering not only to the artist, but for us as the people who walk into Macy’s and make a conscious choice to purchase a gift that will give back.
Here are some interesting facts about the Heart of Haiti initiative.
- Each item is a one-of-a-kind design and handmade by a Haitian master artisan from raw materials such as recycled oil drums, wrought iron, papier-mâché and stone.
- Already, The Heart of Haiti collection has led to employment of 750 artists in Haiti providing financial benefits for an estimated 4,000 to 5,000 people in the country.
- The collection features more than 40 home decor items including quilts, metalwork, ceramics, and paintings. Accessories include vases, candle-holders, serving trays, picture frames, mirrors, coasters, necklaces, clutch purses and more! The craftsmanship and technique behind these works of art, ranging from papier-mâché vases to hand cut metal frames & wall hangings, is truly remarkable. The collection is made almost entirely from recycled and sustainable items such as old cement bags, cardboard, oil drums & local gommier wood.
- Heart of Haiti products are available exclusively at 25 Macy’s stores around the country and on Macy’s.com. The new collection can be found here. 2011 Fall Collection.
- Most items fall in the range from $25-$60
Recently some bloggers from Everywhere Society went over to Haiti to see first hand how this initiative is working. The got the chance to meet the artists in person. Check out this amazing video!
Recently I received a gorgeous handmade hand-cut recycled steel “Songbird” picture frame in the mail. I was amazed at the detail in the work. This is the kind of frame that art galleries sell.
“The singing of the birds is a celestial language attracting the presence of angels.”
This is just one example of the amazing gifts you can purchase at Macy’s. From the artists hand’s to your home, the gifts literally rebuild Haiti one gift at a time.
Really, every time you purchase one of the Heart of Haiti gifts you are giving two gifts. The physical gift to the person who your are purchasing the item for, and the gift of helping an artist rebuild their life.
I would love if you could share the Heart of Haiti project with everyone! Just click this link to tweet the following message!
To stay up-to-date with news and announcements, follow @HeartofHaiti or like our Facebook page http://facebook.com/HeartofHaiti
Disclosure: The Heart of Haiti initiative sent me a frame to review. All thoughts and opinions are 100% honest and my own!