Not so long go i had a chance to work with an amazing brand called “Freeleaf” known for its handcrafted knotted products with a mission to help & empower human trafficking survivors and at-risk individuals by providing them with holistic-care and employment opportunities through their products.
It was the very first time i had worked with such a brand which in return also helped me realize why is it important to use my voice for something that needs to be heard by the entire world.
It’s quite interesting and disappointing at the same time that almost all of us wish for the same things in life be it independence, freedom of speech, a respectful & dignified life and fair treatment from everyone around us, whether at work or home but fail immensely to understand the vulnerability and the struggles behind the victims of human exploitation and trafficking who have been wishing for the same things like us.
Why can’t we all aim to create “a world where people aren’t exploited for the sake of a cute shirt. Where nobody is bought for somebody else’s pleasure. Where everyone has the dignity they deserve. “ – www.starlingmurmurs.org
Now to the good part of the post, it makes me extremely happy to know that there are brands/organizations that understand quite clearly that not everyone has the capability or resources or the willingness to understand the needs of victims of human trafficking and to find ways to help those at-risk, mostly because a lot of people treat it as a world problem and not something that affects us directly, so why to care right?
-Over 24.9 million people are being trafficked globally right now. 75% are women and girls. The fastest growing criminal industry worldwide, trafficking brings in $150 billion per year through its system of exploitation and abuse. Trafficking comes in many different forms, and it’s likely far closer to home than you realize.-
So for this reason i am going to talk about a few ways you can help and contribute to the same cause and a few different brands that offer some amazing handcrafted products you can buy from as a way to donate to organizations that are working directly with victims of human trafficking at a global level, providing them with fair wages, vocational training and safe housing equipments and helping them to escape the industry permanently and start a new life.
STARLING BOX SUBSCRIPTION
Although there are a lot of brands in the market working on the same mission and i will sharing a few with you today, but how would you feel if i say that you can get a variety of ethical products (say 7-8) from a number of different brands like such, all together in one BOX? Wouldn’t that be amazing?
Wouldn’t it be such a delight to get a box full of Ethical goodies that you can enjoy as a way to support or contribute to the organizations supporting survivors and giving them necessary tools to regain their independence?
In other words, for your contribution you get a box full of products that impacts someone’s life, not only for those in need but also a step closer for you to choose ethical, artisan-made products over mass produced goods.
Today i am sharing one such initiative called ” STARLING BOX “, a box curated with 7-8 different ethical products from a variety of different brands that support their mission to equip & empower survivors at risk.
HOW IT WORKS?
The idea behind curating this quarterly based Subscription Box is to offer a variety of products from brands with similar mission for you to enjoy & explore and to walk you through the products each brand offers and share their story in return to what you pay for the box, which is then donated to organizations working directly with the survivors.
It is a 100% non-profit initiative working with organizations such as ZOE International, which shelters and supports children rescued from trafficking globally, and the International Justice Mission, which works within the justice system to prevent trafficking and ensure that proper safeguards are in place.
WHAT TO EXPECT?
Each box is curated with hand-picked items from brands that offer transparent pricing & ethical practices which includes everything from jewelry, accessories, apparel, cruelty-free skincare to even COFFEE (for all the coffee addicts ;)) along with a Handbook that introduces and explains each brand’s story, their mission, the amazing people behind it and the organizations they work with along with the names of the artisans who made each of the products.
The box is a quarterly based subscription with new products every season for you to explore & discover new brands every time you put your money into it!
I got to know about STARLING BOX via Instagram a while ago when they were preparing to launch their very first box. Ever since then i have been quite excited to finally get my hands on one and offer my support by sharing about this amazing initiative with you all.
This is their 2nd subscription box and the next one is going to be out real soon, starting December. This month’s box comes with a variety of great products, each with a unique quality and story behind it. I personally love all of them and quite happy inside for having to know that these products impact’s someone’s life and offers them a chance to start a new one. Products that changes lives may be? Did i just come up with a nice tag line for this box? 😉
Although i don’t want to bore you guys with a super long post, but i really want to share a little overview about all the products from this month’s box and links to each one of them :
1. JOYN BAGS:
- Offers cute & versatile Handcrafted bags and pouches, block printed in different prints & patterns.
- They have employed over 300 at-risk artisans throughout India, Thailand/Myanmar borders.
- Made in India, hand-spun and hand woven cotton with high quality vegan leather.
- Works with a non-profit organization JOYCORPS with their mission to fight fast fashion and combat unfair labor treatment.
Seen here is Meena Signature print small COTTON POUCH priced at 28$ on their website.
2. PURPOSE JEWELRY:
- Handcrafted jewelry with a purpose.
- Beautifully handcrafted, packaged, processed, signed and shipped all by young women rescued from human trafficking.
- 100% of their profits goes to a non-profit organization known as International Sanctuary that provides education, health care, and counseling.
- Has served 300 women in Mumbai and California.
Seen here is sweet & delicate Emi Choker (priced at 20$) from their Hope line collection crafted by new artisans, which symbolizes new beginnings and the fundamental belief that everyone deserves freedom and respect. 🙂
3. Travel Essential Bag from SHE RESCUE HOME:
- Waterproof, lightweight nylon bag perfect for storing toiletries, stationery or any other valuables dry & organized in this simple and multipurpose black bag.
- She Rescue Home is an initiative of “IT’S NOT OK” project, an amazing organization that provides shelter, healing, education and safe employment to survivors & at-risk individuals.
- “How are we going to fight the injustice of human trafficking and sexual assault? One girl at a time!” By purchasing this bag you are taking a stand and declaring IT’S NOT OK! Isn’t it something we all wish for, for ourselves and our loved ones? Think about it…
Seen here is a She Is Pencil case, more like a multipurpose bag for organizing your valuables, priced at 4$ at their website.
A few other products are:
4. Tea Towels from SEWING NEW FUTURES:
Offers paid training in textile making, sewing and other skills which allows these women to gain a sustainable income and channel their creativity. They have a great range of apparels such as kimonos, scarfs as well as recycled sari products and home decor items.
Seen here is a Madira Tea Towel which can be used as table napkins or kitchenware, priced at 10$ on their website.
A line of Organic, vegan and cruelty-free skincare essentials. Founded in the name of “Apple, the first woman I met in the bar in Red light districts of Thailand” says Founder Kristy Alexander. “She was so happy to see me – one customer who wanted nothing from her but to talk about her life and her dreams; to be her friend. “
Apple Rose Beauty was founded as a way to offer fair employment in an environment that treats them with respect.
Seen here is a Basic skincare kit that includes Cayenne & clove cleanser, turmeric aloe moisturizing treatment and a Vitamin C serum for youthful skin, priced at 10$ on their website.
6. Survivor-made coffee from RETHREADED:
Grown and harvested in Rwanda by survivors of Rwanda Genocide, roasted locally by survivors of homelessness and packed & sold at Rethreaded Headquarters in Florida by survivors of sex trafficking. Isn’t it quite amazing? One initiative for multiple causes! They also offer scarfs made out of up-cylced fabric, jewelry, bags & Home goods.
Seen here is Rwandan Earthy & Bold coffee priced at 8$.
7. Healing Essential Oil from THISTLE FARMS:
Thistle Farms has employed 59 survivors so far and has offered 9000 nights of safe housing and 14000 hours of counseling and therapy.
Focus Healing oil priced at 14$.
8. RED THREAD MOVEMENT by Eternal Threads:
Wear freedom on your arm!
The Red Bracelets are made by rescued girls in Nepal with an aim to accomplish three goals:
- Making the bracelets provides employment for rescued girls in the safe house in Nepal.
- The sale of bracelets helps fund the safe house that welcomes them.
- Wearing the red bracelet creates awareness of sex trafficking.
REASONS TO INVEST IN STARLING BOX:
-Starling Box is much more than a box filled with goodies, its a movement and an initiative to raise awareness about trafficking and work to uncover this hidden crime.
-Peeps at Starling Box understand that not everyone possess capabilities or resources to find ways to contribute. The same way not everyone has the ability to invest in brands like such mostly because of other options available in the market from various fast fashion brands at much cheaper prices. The idea behind curating this box is to bring brands that share the same mission together in one box, delivered right at your doorstep to enjoy and explore at a an affordable price!
-Since past one year i have been investing in Ethical & Sustainable brands and have been amending my lifestyle choices to a great extent. Though I have been exploring a lot of new brands but i never came across the ones i found in this box! I feel thats the fun thing about investing here, it not only feels like a surprise but also a gift to ourselves. 🙂
-This box is also an inspiration to start choosing ethical brands over fast fashion. “Because when it comes to forced labor, consumers have enormous power. The industry thrives on the choices that we make. By saying no to fast fashion, we can harness our consumer power and cast our vote for the kind of world that we want to see.”–
-A great way to gain knowledge about different brands, their story and the mission behind each one of them.
-A great way to contribute to the cause and understand the struggles faced by women like us at risk. It only helps those who are in need but also leaves us feeling good about ourselves by investing in products that impacts someone’s life.
“Let us all work together towards a world where people aren’t exploited for the sake of a cute shirt. Where nobody is bought for somebody else’s pleasure. Where everyone has the dignity they deserve. “– www.starlingmurmurs.org
Here’s a link to subscribe to STARLING BOX: Starling Box Subscription
The box is priced at 49.95$ quarterly, fairly low & decent as compared to the total of all the products you get in the box. I have also mentioned individual prices of each one of them for your reference. You can subscribe and get yourself the same box or look out for a new season box which will be out in December.
Liked this post? Share with your friends on Pinterest!
Concept and styling: Tanvi Mutneja (@tanvi_msidhu)
Photography : Rajvir Sidhu