Saturday, March 7, 2015

Support International Women's Day with L’Occitane Solidarity Balm

Every year, to mark International Women’s Day on March 8th, L’Occitane pays tribute to the women of Burkina Faso. It was in Burkina Faso, in the early 1980s, that Olivier Baussan first discovered shea butter -- an exceptional ingredient that both nourishes and protects. Since then, over 30 years of shared history have built a bond between L’Occitane and the women of Burkina Faso. To keep this bond strong, the L’Occitane Foundation has chosen to focus its actions on their economic emancipation by supporting, in particular, literacy, training and microcredit programs in Burkina Faso.

For International Women’s Day 2015, L’Occitane has introduced Shea Butter Apricot Solidarity Balm ($6), which is an apricot-scented, multi-purpose moisturizer made with 96% shea butter. Ultra nourishing and protective, it can be used on the lips, body and hair, and slips easily into your handbag, so you can keep it with you wherever you go. Team TME was highly impressed with this deliciously scented multi-purpose balm and the fact that the L’Occitane Foundation is donating 100% of sales profits to organizations that promote women’s entrepreneurship is a beautiful bonus for an outstanding product.

In 2009, the L’Occitane Foundation began working in partnership with the French NGO Entrepreneurs du Monde on a multi-year project. Developed with the microfinance institution ASIENA, it aims to promote economic self-sufficiency and an entrepreneurial spirit among Burkinabé women.

The project focuses on two main themes:
  1. Providing financial support for women, so that they can develop income-generating activities
  2. Assisting these women by providing socio-economic training, to build up their entrepreneurial skills

“Microcredit has enabled me to start up my business selling dolo. As this business was doing well, I was able to take out three other loans to develop other activities. My standard of living has vastly improved.” - Marie-Claire

“I took out a microcredit loan so that I could build up a stock of coconuts and ginger juice to sell on the market. This enables me to complement the income I already make from shea butter so that I can be financially autonomous all year long.” - Barkissa

An ambitious microcredit project -- To date, almost 900 women have learned to read and write in the 31 literacy centers opened by the L’Occitane Foundation, while over 6,000 women have benefited from microcredits. To learn more about the L’Occitane Foundation visit L’Occitane Foundation online and to purchase Shea Butter Apricot Solidarity Balm visit L’Occitane.

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