During the ONE Women and Girls AYA Summit I attended in mid-October, I had the pleasure to meet Jane Mosbacher Morris, Founder and CEO of TO THE MARKET | Survivor-made Goods. Jane presented on her social enterprise TO THE MARKET | Survivor-made Goods (TTM) an amazing, creative organization that combines the powers of commerce and storytelling to empower the world’s most courageous survivor populations.
To the Market showcases handmade goods made exclusively by proud and passionate artisans who have overcome the perils of abuse, conflict, and disease. By assisting local partners around the world in bringing these goods “to the market,” TTM takes an active role in equipping the survivor’s they employ with economic independence, while raising awareness of the challenges that they face.
I was so impressed by Jane and the organization that she founded, that I invited her to do a guest post on my blog to introduce you to her work and To the Market. Here is her story.
To the Market: How and Why it Began
Guest post by Jane Mosbacher Morris is the Founder and CEO of TO THE MARKET | Survivor-made Goods
Whether working domestically or abroad, I am consistently reminded of how crucial it is, especially for women, to have some form of economic independence. This economic independence helps to ensure that we are not left at the mercy of others when we unexpectedly find ourselves in a dire situation.
This point was hammered home to me during my time working for the U.S. State Department on women and security. I began studying the approach that many governments and non-profits were taking to provide assistance to vulnerable populations, many of whom were women. What I observed was a major focus on social service provision—administering things like medicine, housing, and pro-bono legal assistance. Social services are extraordinarily important, particularly in emergency situations, but they are generally not available to the beneficiary for the duration of his or her life. What seemed to be lacking was a plan to support those in need after they received the emergency assistance.