Behind the Selection of Producers

Yes we are more than a retail boutique selling great stuff and like some retailers we  donate profits to charities. For us that's the minimum, there is so much more impact can be achieved by integrating the approach!

Our main impact is through our organisations and producers.

They provide the life giving income, work place, community initiatives and more. So you would like to think we gave it a bit of thought before we select them. And we have, here we focus on the values we seek out in our producers and the organisations behind them. 

Credible

This is our first value and we do our best to validate .

To us it means simply that they are doing what they say they are doing.

As Heather worked in the development sector in South East Asia, living there for almost 8 years and she has a broad network of people involved in the sector. Our founding producers were recommended to her by people she knew had been involved in some way and seen them in action.

She has build on this connection to develop relationships with the organisation and continues to highly value communication, collaboration and her relationship with them. 

As for Dignity has grown, it has started to build relationships with new producers. These producers have credibility based on their association with external bodies such as World Fair Trade Organisation etc.

It is important to us that they have at least one of the values below, but preferably most!

Fighting Human Trafficking

Fighting Human Trafficking Icon

What sets For Dignity apart from other ethical and fair trade retailers is their commitment to work that prevents, rescues and restores people from human trafficking.  We identify organisations who have positioned themselves in communities where trafficking is prevalent. As 78% of trafficked into the sex industry, this often means working in the communities are in red light districts.  The anti trafficking work is represented in a few ways.                        

 


Trafficking Prevention

Prevention of trafficking includes awareness raising in communities, advocacy and school education programs. It directly helps build the communities’ resilience against trafficking. 

Tackling some of the underlying issues in communities that put people at high risk of trafficking is also prevention, especially in locations that have higher numbers of people being trafficked out of them.  Generating employment and income for community members is strategic in the fight against trafficking and slavery. 

Outreach and Rescue

Some of our producers are proactive  seek out people who are trapped and exploited. They build relationship and trust and offer opportunity, safe housing and a holistic restorative program to those who want to leave the industry they are trapped in.  They also try to repatriate  those who have been trafficked from another country.

 

Doing more than providing a job.

Our producers business  model provides more than giving a job to someone. Each vary in what exactly they have integrated, but here’s what we look for… 

Fair Trade Recognised.

         

Many of our producers have a fair-trade certification with recognised organisations. They adhere to the Fair Trade Principles.

 A small number of our producers are smaller and do not have the capacity to apply for formal recognition. We continue encourage them to pursue it in the future and at the same time ensure that they are offering fair and safe workplaces, pay a liveable wage and provide holistic care.  We are delighted that most of them provide well beyond that minimum and are doing a great job!

Holistic Care

People have physical, social, emotional and spiritual needs and the suppliers are addressing what they can, intentionally. This may include health care, vocational training and professional development, safety and education for their children, housing, savings plans and more depending on the organisation. 
 

Restorative Care

For those that have experienced the trauma of trafficking or exploitation, the organisation provides counselling and support that helps that person begin to heal and gain a deep awareness of their value.

Eco Friendly

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Our big focus is people and so the world they live in also comes into our consideration.

As a Melbourne based enterprise, for Dignity is doing our bit to reduce waste and be eco friendly. Reducing consumption, recycling and reusing whenever we can.  We wrap up your product in fresh, clean recycled paper packaging, mainly Australian made.  Sea shipment when plausible, instead of air freight, is our preferred transportation method.

 

We celebrate those of our producers who use organic cotton so the local farmers and environment is not exposed to pesticides and other who use recycled and remnant saris and leather, recycled metals, non toxic dyes and local raw materials to reduce the environmental impact of their production. 

Empowering Artisan Communities

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Our producers who are creating products by integrating the skills of craftsmen in the region have tapped into a local resource and local raw materials that enables them empower the community more.   This often means our products are made by hand, some from the very outset, others later in the design process. Hours of careful design and labour goes into the making of the pieces and we value the producer's workmanship and skills.

 

Our Values at a Glance

As all these values do not apply to every one of our producers we are putting on each product and producers pages the red icons to help you recognise the behind story as you shop. 

Values Icons

P.S. As our universal value is credibility, you can assume we've applied it to all our producers. 

Why Human Trafficking