This post is part of a paid collaboration with GlobeIn. All opinions are my own.
Last weekend, I had the opportunity to road trip over to the Potomac River for a slow weekend with 5 of my closest friends and a delightful baby. We stayed over in our friend’s riverside condo, spreading out on air mattresses and couches, drinking coffee and eating eggs together in the mornings, and watching classic movies. We took the golf cart for a spin around town, floated in the swimming pool for a couple of hours, and ate delicious food from local eateries, including one peculiar but surprisingly coherent French-Thai restaurant.
No internet access. No schedule. Just the river and the quiet comforts of communal living.
I brought GlobeIn’s Wander Box with me, figuring it was appropriate for the meditative wandering I was about to embark on by the river.
The Wander Box includes a hand woven, drawstring backpack from Sri Lanka, Shea-based insect repellant from South Sudan, an Elephant poop travel journal from Sri Lanka, and a woven palm leaf basket from Mexico. Everything was made under fair trade guidelines and was handpicked for this box by the GlobeIn crew to aid in your next outdoor adventure.
I like the convenience of the lightweight backpack, because it can be easily rolled up into a suitcase or purse like a grocery tote and pulled out when you need it. But my very favorite item is the Elephant Journal, made out of elephant poop! It sounds gross, but it’s sanitized and pressed, so there’s nothing to worry about there. The paper is lined and the cover is thick, so it won’t get beat up inside a purse or bag. I am an amateur poet, so I like to bring journals with me when I travel in case inspiration strikes.
What distinguishes GlobeIn from other fair trade businesses is that they combine a dedication to artisan craft tradition with a modern format for delivery. The subscription box creates a tailored service that helps consumers see the beauty and practicality of traditionally-crafted goods, and their marketplace lets consumers re-purchase individual items for their own use or to give as gifts.
There’s no question that industrialization has improved certain production processes, but nothing can replace the intricacy and human connection – not to mention personal gratification – handicrafts bring. We are at risk of losing a part of our collective history if we do not place value on the works of artisans.
Speaking of artisans, each GlobeIn box comes with an artisan-made woven box from Mexico. GlobeIn recently produced a video profiling the weavers they work with in Oaxaca. I was startled by the extent of growth they’ve had in 4 years, starting with 2 weaves and now working with over 50, in addition to working with over 40 other artisan groups around the world. I encourage you to watch the video, as I think it does a good job of crafting the narrative around the artisans’ perspectives, which helps us see that this business model is effective at honoring people’s dignity while helping to develop sustainable infrastructure.
“She’s not a charity case. She’s an entrepreneur.” – Watch the video here
It can be difficult to strike the right balance between helping and empowering, but from what I can tell, GlobeIn has found it. Partnerships that see all humans as equally valuable – and honor the skills and unique talents of others – are the key to human flourishing. Read more about GlobeIn here.