The Esperanza Market was born from the idea that businesses can do better. That businesses can align themselves with a deeper mission than maximizing profits. That businesses can both provide high-quality products and services and at the same time help make the world a better place to live.
Esperanza means hope in Spanish. The Esperanza Market hopes to improve the lives of impoverished women and children in Nicaragua through the sale of handmade, Fair Trade bags and purses.
Nicaragua is the second-poorest country in the Western Hemisphere after Haiti. Much of the population lives off of $3 or less a day. Only 27% graduate from primary school and one-third of the population lives without reliable electricity.
We strive to stimulate economic development by working directly with artisans. By creating an online marketplace for their handmade products, we are providing the under- and unemployed artisans, mostly women, with an opportunity to earn vital income in poverty-stricken parts of Latin America. We follow Fair Trade guidelines, which means we pay artisans a living wage, not minimum wage, for their work.
For every bag sold, we donate a solar-powered light to one of the many children living without reliable electricity in the area the bag was made. Once the sun sets around 6pm, many students are not able to continue their studies because of lack of light.
Our first giving partner is Education Plus Nicaragua, a nonprofit providing free education, nutrition and medical attention to the children of Pantanal. Pantanal is one of the poorest neighborhoods in Central America located just outside the tourist mecca of Granada. None of the children live with indoor plumbing or access to clean water. Two-thirds of the families can not afford food or medical attention while 85% live dirt floor shacks.
Once all the students at Education Plus Nicaragua have solar-powered lights, we will move on to similar schools in the area.
One of the highlights of the Esperanza Market is its blog. Every week we will publish several blogs educating readers about the importance of Fair Trade and Global Citizenry, travel guides to Nicaragua and a spotlight blog highlighting nonprofits, businesses and individuals dedicating their work to making the world a better place.
Have any questions for us? Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Make sure you follow the adventure Instagram, @esperanza_market. Travel. Shop. Light the World.