Perhaps the current microfinance crisis provides a striking opportunity to reexamine the shortfalls of the “aid” being distributed via microloans as well as the ways in which we can redefine financial inclusion and link the success of established businesses with the success of female artisans and textile producers the world over. Rebecca Kousky realized quickly that money, mentoring and markets were all of equal value in the sustainability game and set about creating a new kind of organization – and founded Nest, an organisation that is neither wholly business, nor strictly social enterprise, nor simply microfinance. “We try to see ourselves as bridging two worlds rather than forcing one into another,” she tells the SOURCE. She has creatively forged a new model of sustainable economic development and cultural preservation, allowing its major retail partners to capitalize on the fact that increasingly what people love about a brand is not only the look, but the ethical story it tells.
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