Trades of Hope, More Than Charity – Podcast

by | Founders

Read Time: 2 min.

Founders Gretchen & Elisabeth Interviewed by Kenny Rawlins

Trades of Hope founders, Gretchen and Elisabeth Huijskens, were interviewed as featured guests on a podcast with Kenny Rawlins from mlm.com, a lead resource in the direct sales community.

They had the opportunity to discuss the unique ways Trades of Hope empowers women out of poverty around the globe by partnering with Artisans to (individually) create each product we sell. These purposeful partnerships impact communities by creating sustainable income, versus the charity model.

Charity itself serves a great purpose, especially in times of natural disasters and to help communities through periods of recovery. Sustainable income empowers women to provide for their families, learn valuable skills, and receive healthcare and education for their children. This allows them to leave behind lives of prostitution, bond slavery, abuse, and other atrocities and step into freedom. It is a solution for long-term recovery from these existing conditions.

A Unique Business Model

The unique aspect to the Trades of Hope business model is how we empower women on both sides of the direct sales equation. Like other direct sales companies, our consultants, called Compassionate Entrepreneurs (now called Partners), are able to earn an income on their own terms: working as many or as few hours as they choose while planning their schedules around their families, jobs, and other obligations. The partnership we have with our Artisans is the bridge that connects them to a greater purpose in their businesses – purpose that motivates them to succeed, but for something beyond themselves and their own needs.

We know the names and stories behind our Artisans, which gives our Partners a more personalized connection with them. They share Artisans’ stories with their customers. Stories of freedom, purpose, redemption, and newfound hope through partnering with Trades of Hope. A bond created, a sisterhood formed, a contribution to a world beyond their own. Purpose.

Trades of Hope exists to help mothers keep their babies and provide for their children.

The extremely poor of the world are vulnerable and can be forced to make unthinkable choices. Mothers give up their babies to orphanages to avoid starvation or families send their daughters to the city with strangers, all with a hope for a better future. There is a solution.

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Barb DeSouza

Barb DeSouza

Barb has held several roles at Trades of Hope in the past 5 years but none fit this entrepreneur's style like her role in our Marketing/Communications team. Best known as her alter-ego, "Barbara Hope" in the Partners' Facebook world, Barb infuses her quirky dry humor to punctuate her posts and/or lightens tensions with a well-placed sarcastic GIF when the group's collective estrogen level is peaking. She is passionate about coffee, grammar, music, creating art, and is 817% smitten with her first grandbaby, Jack.


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2. a blog by Trades of Hope

Trades of Hope is an ethical fashion and lifestyle brand that helps women around the world escape poverty and trafficking through our fair trade designs. Learn how you can partner with Artisans around the world here.