World Finds utilizes a 360° approach that is about building true partnerships with our artisans and working to create positive change through all of their work. The company is committed to being fair and responsible in everything they do – socially, economically, and environmentally.
Founder Kelly Weinberger and her husband David Burns left their jobs in 1999 to travel around the world. After spending time in many developing countries, and experiencing the tremendous poverty, Kelly was determined the next phase of her life would be to make a difference in some of the communities she had seen. A pivotal encounter with a fellow traveler in Nepal informed her about the concept of Fair Trade and a seed was planted. The idea grew throughout the trip, and an informative meeting with Traid Aid, a fair trade organization in New Zealand, solidified it.
Back in the States, Kelly began to build a market for the products she had started to source from fair trade organizations and small families of artisans. She connected with the Fair Trade Federation, and was thrilled to find a community of like-minded individuals. WorldFinds had a clear goal – to provide work, not charity, to artisans by finding markets for their handmade products. Kelly saw a huge opportunity with design. There weren’t a lot of well-designed products at that time. Surely consumers couldn’t resist products that were on trend, well-designed, and that also created so much good to the artisans? Her marketing background and passion for design allows her to develop distinctive products not available anywhere else.
WorldFinds sells its products wholesale. They work directly with all of their artisan groups – which include a combination of WFTO (World Fair Trade Organization) members, small families of artisans, and women’s cooperatives. They are all talented, low-income artisans who are paid a livable wage and have safe working conditions, access to healthcare and childcare, and on-going training and education.
World Finds' holistic approach means they have been working with many of these groups for over a decade. During that time they have seen many artisans lift themselves out of poverty and even launch their own successful businesses, strengthening the entire community.