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Friday, February 14, 2014

Macy's Heart of Haiti

Two years ago at BlissDom I was introduced to Heart of Haiti. While talking to the gal at the booth in the expo hall I fell in love with the purpose behind the Heart of Haiti project. They had a heart for Haitian artisans living in poverty who wanted more for their lives. And Heart of Haiti was making dreams come true for them.


A couple of weeks ago I was reintroduced to Heart of Haiti through a Twitter party. Again, I fell in love with their cause.

Heart of Haiti is an initiative that grew out of a partnership between Fairwinds Trading Co. (Formerly run by Willa Shalit), the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund and Macy's. Macy's had already worked with Willa and Fairwinds in the past on Rwanda Path to Peace, an initiative similar to that in Haiti that purchases products from basket weavers in Rwanda who are recovering from the genocide almost twenty years ago. 

Very shortly after the earthquake in 2010, Willa established a group of artisans that she thought had immense talent and simply needed an opportunity and some training to be successful at selling their art internationally. She brought in designers such as Rachel Roy and Martha Stewart to help the Haitian artists find products and designs that would sell in the U.S. Macy's CEO Terry Lundgren also visited and wanted to find a way to help. Therefore, Macy's Heart of Haiti was born. It was formed and for sale online with months of the earthquake, putting income back into the pockets of the artists. Originally around 450 artists as a part of the Artisans Business Network, and is now closer to 750. 

The collection features more than 40 home decor items including quilts,
metalwork, jewelry and paintings all made almost entirely from recycled and
sustainable items such as old cement bags, cardboard, oil drums and local
gommier wood. 

Macy’s Heart of Haiti upholds the belief that “trade not aid” is a powerful way to
create sustainable work and much needed financial opportunity.

Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and despite the
devastating earthquake people there are filled with hope and a desire to improve
their lives through employment.


The Spotted Black and White Paper Mache vase you see in these pictures is from Macy's Heart of Haiti. It is truly a work of art. A piece of handcrafted beauty.


I'd love it if you'd watch the following video to get a sense of what Heart of Haiti is doing to help the people in Haiti. Then, I challenge you to head over to Macy's and take a look at all of the beautiful pieces of art that are for purchase. I know you'll love them!

Everywhere has provided me with this Macy's Heart of Haiti product to review. However, all thoughts and opinions expressed herein are my own.

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