My husband, Todd, and I started a non-profit organization, Africa Bags, doing charitable work over in Malawi, Africa. Africa Bags has entered into five ultra poor villages in northern Malawi with foot-powered treadle sewing machines, cloth, and all the materials/resources necessary for the Malawians to produce reusable cloth shopping bags. We sell the bags back in the United States, returning 100% of all profits back to the villagers.
Our goals with Africa Bags are two fold: to empower the citizens of Malawi by giving them an opportunity to create a sustainable economy, and to help fight environmental waste by reducing the use of plastic shopping bags.
Most charitable efforts result in a short-term fix for the extreme poverty in Malawi; the underlying issues that created the problem still exist. By creating a sustainable conomy in the poorest villages, Africa Bags can give Malawians an opportunity to provide for themselves. The cycle of poverty can be broken.