Based out of Calgary, Alberta, Collective Goods (CG) is a non-profit organization that serves to empower underprivileged women across the world. Collective Goods creates opportunities for women to participate in a marketplace as a means of establishing economic self-sufficiency. When partnered with CG, underprivileged women find new opportunities to sustain themselves and their families through the sales of their artisanal goods in North America.
As for how Collective Goods came to be, it all begins with their very first global artisan partner, Ellilta Women at Risk (EWAR). EWAR is an Ethiopian non-profit dedicated to rehabilitating women who were once living a life of prostitution. In 2017, EWAR reached out to a charitable partner in Calgary for support with their income-generating facet Ellilta Products. As the charitable partner was legally limited to help, CG was born to better fulfill the needs of EWAR and Ellilta Products.
Beyond generating financial stability for their partners, Collective Goods also focuses on educating and encouraging communities to become involved in conscious consumerism. They hope to spread the message that behind every scarf or piece of jewelry is a story – one that tells of a women’s path from life on the streets to freedom.
Collective Goods officially launched in June 2018, with the release of their first collection: The Addis Collection. Scarves and blankets in the Addis Collection are 100% cotton and are handmade from start to finish including the spinning, dyeing, and weaving of the cotton. Furthermore, the jewelry pieces in CG’s first collection are stunningly crafted out of recycled bullet casings left over from wars in the country. This first collection is made by Ellilta Products and all the cotton, wood, stone, leather, and bead supplies are sourced from local markets in Ethiopia.
Collective Goods is currently run by a board of directors and staff managers who make up the executive committee. CG is proud to say that all their staff on board are volunteers who are passionately dedicating their skills and time to empowering women around the world. With their second collection of scarves and jewelry set to launch later this year, there is lots to expect from Collective Goods!
Learn more about Collective Goods on their website & follow them on Instagram to see the beauty in shopping #goodsthatdogood.
Written by Angie Lam
Photographed by Janice Lee Photography