General

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Breaking Ground and Building Up at the Fair Trade Zone

Pictured: Clockwise: Melanie Popowich, team reviewing initial ideas for Fair Trade Zone, a view of the first building, and the staff from the Akuse office visit the new building. We are exceptionally thrilled to share with our fantastic community that we FINALLY have a building on our land! Before we …

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Giving Tuesday 2020: Fundraising For Our Operational Hub

As an international brand in an increasingly digital world our website is an integral hub for operations. It’s where newcomers learn about our work, where volunteers and donors engage with our mission, and where wholesale and retail customers shop the products that facilitate our impact. Our ads, social media, emails, …

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Educating Communities on Rights to Natural Resources

Akuse, a town near the Volta River in Ghana’s Eastern Region, is home to Global Mamas’ newest eco initiative. In collaboration with local communities our team is using invasive water hyacinth as the raw material for an all-new collection of natural fiber products. Known locally as the “poison flower,” the …

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Women’s Day 2020: Building a Gender Equal World

With the unwavering support of our community, Global Mamas keeps pressing for gender equality for women in Ghana. We believe greater balance of power depends on greater economic independence for women– you can read more about this issue here. Beyond the direct opportunities we’ve provided for hundreds of women over …

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Global Mamas Celebrates our Mama (and Papa) of the Year

By Patience Treve Each year, we celebrate the Mama who most exemplified our values in the last year: strength of community, long-term commitment, innovation, economic self-sufficiency, and creating positive change. Our Winners This year, we have not one but two winners: Grace Doku and Moses Buernortey. A brother-and-a sister team …

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Cervical Cancer Prevention in Cape Coast

Maggie O’Neill, volunteer Global Mamas welcomed Dr. Justice Arthur—a Chief Doctor from Cape Coast’s District Hospital—to educate our Mamas, their apprentices, and QC staff about cervical cancer. This is part of Global Mamas’ multi-faceted initiative to help its members achieve multi-dimensional prosperity, prosperity that goes beyond financial well-being and business …

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Global Mamas Annual Report 2005

2014 Reflections from the Global Mamas Leadership Team

At Global Mamas we take prosperity seriously. It is, after all, our mission. We believe that prosperity goes beyond financial well-being to also encompass both health and happiness. We have learned over the last eleven years that what these three states of being mean are relative to every person. But …

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Global Mamas Design Process

Alice Grau, creative director Global Mamas is dedicated to delivering fair trade, handmade, and stylish clothing, accessories, and home décor. In addition to the Mamas who produce our products, our talented design team plays an integral role in bringing you the products you love. Unlike large fashion brands that have …

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A health care professional from Planned Parenthood Association of Ghana providing screenings for interested producers in Cape Coast

From Retail to the Source

Many people would not typically think about who made a product or where it came from upon purchasing an item. Nor would they trace the product to its source. A volunteer, Katie Modley, had the unique opportunity to meet the Global Mamas that made the products that she wears and sells.

Eli Kpotorfe – A Very Special Ingredient

Product Conception to Fruition

The Global Mamas slogan ‘Love Your Product, Know Your Producer, Change Her Life’ is firmly embodied in every sketch, stamp, and stitch from the initial design idea to the finished product.

Krobo’s Global Mamas – Photo by Desirae Early

Great Growth in Krobo

Global Mamas has been operating in the Krobo area for more than five years. As with all new ventures, the bead operation started off relatively small while we learned the market and ensured that the products we exported met the high quality standards our customers expect from Global Mamas.

Two Ajumako producers modeling their braided necklace samples

New Products Changing Lives: Ampiah-Ajumako Business

The economy of Ajumako is mainly agricultural and before Global Mamas many of the women were employed through that sector and were not making a steady income. The Ampiah-Ajumako Business Center opened in January 2008 with 3 workers and has now grown to employ 11 women.

Two Ajumako producers modeling their braided necklace samples

The Evolution of Bead making in West Africa

Bead making is an industry that has long been a part of the West African culture. In the ancient times, beads served a myriad of functions: some were used as a form of currency for goods between tribes, whereas others adorned chiefs and their wives to indicate their wealth and status.

Two Ajumako producers modeling their braided necklace samples

The Start of Shea Butter: Testing a New Territory

When it comes to personal care, women want what is best. Every year the United States spends over 8 billon dollars on women’s cosmetics and the figure continues to grow each year. This massive consumption speaks to the universal desire of women to take care of their skin and body.

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Global Mamas Launches a Pet Line!

2010 is around the corner and Global Mamas has exciting news to share. Global Mamas is expanding its line of products to include our four legged friends! Global Mamas will be launching a wonderful fair trade line of pet products in 2010.

A customer shops at the Global Mamas’ Second Saturday sale in Minneapolis, MN.

Launch of Trade for Change

In an effort to better serve its growing number of retail partners, the Global Mamas shopping site was converted to a wholesale site in 2009. As a result, Trade for Change was launched to continue the online retail sales of Global Mamas products to consumers, and generate more orders and additional income for the Global Mamas network of fair trade producers in Ghana.

Helping Hand from Customers

2008 Global Mamas of the Year Awards

On May 22, 2009 Global Mamas kicked off the 2008 awards season at Odumase-Krobo to recognize outstanding members of the Global Mamas network. The O-K Annual Meeting took place at 1 pm at the Madizu Fair Trade Company. The meeting was well attended by bead makers, bead assemblers, and Global Mama volunteers and friends.

Traveling the Distance for Quality

Traveling the Distance for Quality

Ally Harris has been an employee for Global Mamas in the U.S. for over a year. This September she had the opportunity to come to Ghana and learn more about the how the complex production of Global Mamas batik apparel and accessories works.

Traveling the Distance for Quality

Launch of GM store in Accra

On August 1, 2008 Global Mamas launched a new store in the Osu area of Accra. The store represents the creative talent and dedication of Matthew Sturm and Megan Collins who designed and launched the store in less than one month.

Design Competition

Global Mamas Expands to the UK

Penetrating new markets is never easy, however it is not impossible, as any of the women of the Global Mamas Cooperative will tell you. Step by step, and connection by connection, GM has finally gotten its name, reputation, and unique style to the streets of the UK.

Roundtable Discussion Highlights 2005 Successes

Ajumako: From Rags to Rugs

After two tro-tro rides and a taxi, anyone, no matter how well traveled, would be worn out; however, within a few minutes upon arriving at Ajumako-Ampiah – a small village on the outskirts of Ajumako – the community’s friendly and energetic atmosphere instills itself upon us, and we begin to revive.

Design Competition

Global Mamas Krobo Bead-Making Co-op Continues to Grow

In August 2006, Global Mamas expanded to Odumase-Krobo in the Eastern Region to begin producing marketing fair-trade, recycled glass Ghanaian beads and beaded products. With a $16,000 grant from the British High Commission, Global Mamas was able to pay for the Co-operative’s start-up costs.

Design Competition

Design Competition

In August, Global Mamas orchestrated its first annual Design Dontest for its seamstresses, batikers and bead designers in order to introduce new products in the 2008 wholesale catalog. At the outset of the contest, the Global Mamas gathered for an informative meeting to learn about which Global Mamas products were best sellers in the US, UK and Australian markets.

Global Mamas: Making a Difference, Differently

Krobo Dreams Become Reality

At long last, our dreams of a second Global Mamas location were realized with the opening of our operations in Krobo in August 2006. Thanks to the hard work and diligence of many of our volunteers and Mandy Sage – who heads the Krobo location – we are now able to offer our international trade program and services to the talented bead workers of Krobo.

Global Mamas: Making a Difference, Differently

Global Mamas: Making a Difference, Differently

Every company wants it: characteristics that separate and distinguish itself from other companies. Global Mamas has made this a priority from the beginning and still strives to do so. The company sets itself apart from other NGOs in several ways, both large and small, but all being important to the success and growth of the company.

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AGOA Facilitates Exporting

In May 2000 the U.S. Congress passed the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) which serves to promote the economic and political development of Sub-Saharan African countries.

Melanie Popowich - We miss you...

New Global Mamas Store Opens in Cape Coast

In September, Women in Progress opened a new Global Mamas store on busy Kingsway Street in Cape Coast. The new location provides a tremendous opportunity to market WIP’s products and workshops in the profitable local tourist market.

Elisabeth receives her diploma from Beth.

A Ghanaian Women’s Perspective: “How does the Upcoming Presidential Election Affect Small Business Women in Ghana?”

With the declaration of the golden age of business by the current government, women have not been left out! There has been a lot of encouragement from the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs and quite a number of NGOs, one of which is Women in Progress, to help small business women acquire business skills and enable them to expand their businesses.

Melanie Popowich - We miss you...

The results are in: International Trade Pilot

Since the opening of its first overseas office in Ghana in March 2003, Women in Progress (WIP) has been focusing on launching its International Trade program. Taking an unusual approach, WIP started at the end. What? Before making a full-force effort to help businesses become “export ready”, WIP helped its clients to first identify overseas markets!

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