The brainchild of three young college men, the nonprofit Krochet Kids International has one mission: to empower people to rise above poverty.
They’re doing just that—empowering—by teaching women in Uganda to crochet hats, the profits of which go directly back to the hat’s maker to help her break the cycle of poverty and dependence on humanitarian aid. We’re happy to announce that these hats are now available both online and in store. It was our pleasure to speak with Stewart Ramsey, co-founder of Krochet Kids, about the program’s goals and how it all came to life.
What gave you the idea to start Krochet Kids?
In our naivety, my friends and I wanted to change the world! But in reality, Krochet Kids started because we listened to the need. In traveling and volunteering in different places around the world, we made friends with people who were often subjected to unjust and difficult circumstances—things like war, disease, famine and living on less than $2 a day. In an effort to help with the little resources we had as a group of young college boys, we turned to crocheting as an opportunity to employ people who wanted to work. With yarn and hook in hand, we traveled to Africa and taught a small group of women how to crochet hats.
What do you want customers to know about you?
First, I’d want customers to know that we are a nonprofit. We are fully transparent about how much of a hat purchase actually changes the life of the person who signed it. Our customers need to understand that by purchasing a hat, a woman is able to provide food, water, clothes and education for up to six dependents. Purchasing a hat literally pulls people out of poverty, those living on less than $2 a day. It also allows for the next generation to be educated, so they can pursue their own hopes and dream. Customers have an opportunity to get to know the person that made their product and interact with them on our website.
Why partner with Nordstrom?
Nordstrom has an amazing role in all of this. Together, the more hats we sell, the more lives we change. For instance, to get ready for our first Nordstrom order, Krochet Kids grew from 10 ladies to 100 in a matter of months. The total impact grew from 60 individuals being directly impacted to 600. That is just the direct impact; there is an indirect impact of another 22 individuals per beneficiary. Villages in Northern Uganda are experiencing the positive effects of global economics in ways they never have before. It’s an opportunity to educate customers about a new product and a new way of doing business that is beneficial to the world.
What’s next for Krochet Kids?
Krochet Kids will continue to grow in sub-Saharan Africa by employing more women and sourcing raw materials. In addition to growth in Africa, we have already taken trips to countries in South America and Asia where women and their families find themselves in destitute situations. Krochet Kids will expand its product offering from around the globe and change lives while we do it.
You can purchase Krochet Kids online or in store at The Rail and BP.