The inventorying and fulfilling of Indego Africa handicrafts is fully-outsourced through a new program, Fulfillment by Amazon. This required us to develop UPC barcodes, product style codes, detailed photos, and web-based management expertise. Very few nonprofits or handicraft sellers use such a sophisticated process, yet Indego Africa didn't stop there. Our Rwandan artisan partners learn the style codes, create the product tags, and apply the bar codes. They now know exactly how their product gets from their workshop to your home. Just another way that social enterprise is providing commercial education and integrating women into the (increasingly electronic) global marketplace.
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
When you buy a product in commerce, it's easy to forget that you're the last link in a long supply chain. I'll certainly never lose sight of that fact. The women we work with in Rwanda make their products with little more than traditional knowledge, incredible craftsmanship, and creativity. In some cases they're working with foot-powered sewing machines (circa 1950). What's incredible is how these products get here and the role the women play.