My name is Elke van Sluis and I’m the founder of the foundation Counting Flowers.
Counting Flowers is a foundation, a social company that sells handmade scarves made mostly by women in developing countries.
We sell the scarves mainly because we were looking for a way for people in developing countries to earn money just by producing and selling their products.
We quickly encountered talented weavers and noticed that it's just really cool to offer scarves to people in the West that you can not find anywhere else.
This scarf for example, we sell by gustomoda.
It is a silk scarf made by Vinita from the North of Thailand.
She is well known for her use of color and its dyeing techniques.
This scarf is made with the Batech technique.
So you see the round circles that are painted with wax, after this the scarf is placed in different paint pools, bringing this as a final result.
Contact and communication is always a huge challenge.
We work with local weavers from 18 countries.
Very few of them speak English.
So what we usually do is that I visit them and search for a locals who speaks English and are able to do the translation with the local weavers.
At Counting Flowers we find it very important that everyone knows who made your unique scarf.
So we put the creators very much in the spotlight.
On our website you can see exactly where the weavers come from and with which fair trade organization they are affiliated.
So in theory, you could contact them yourself.
Because our main goal is that these local weavers have as much work as possible whether it’s by our channel or another.
What perhaps more important and good to know for our customers is that all our profits, so not 10%, or 50% but really 100% goes direct to girls education in these developing countries.
Currently this is a project on the garbage dump in Manila, where we help girls going back to school.
Our vision is to create a better world by sending these girls to school to get an education.