Lindsay Woodruff wants to bring a bit of the world to area residents.
The Tipp City resident had been planning the Pachamama Market in her head for around five years before she took the plunge, opening the fair trade/handmade goods business at 116 S. Market St. downtown in late November.
“Everything in here is fair trade and handmade, primarily by women in the Global South,” Woodruff said as she showed off the business and its offerings made by those in developing countries in Central and South America, Africa and South Asia.
Keeping with a fair trade principle of promoting environmental stewardship, many items are made of recycled materials or natural materials from sustainable sources in the region where the product was made, she said.
A Tippecanoe High School and Xavier University graduate, Woodruff said she “stumbled” into a fair trade club in college and fell in love with the concept of a social justice approach to international business.
“I have been personally shopping fair trade ever since college and working in nonprofits and international development for the past 10 years,” she said.
She studied in Peru in graduate school on the road to a master’s in nonprofit management.
“Throughout my professional experience I have seen fair trade as the most sustainable approach to truly eliminating global poverty, especially when you focus on women,” Woodruff said. When men in developing countries have financial opportunities they tend to go to the city from their smaller communities. The women, though, tend to stay in the community, send their children to school and hire other women to work at their small business.
“It is a very sustainable and holistic approach to helping change lives,” Woodruff said.
The store’s name comes from Peru and means Mother Earth.
The business plan had been in her head for years and a topic of frequent comments to her husband Ben, she said. The couple has two children, Mara, 7, and Leona, 4.
After she left a job late last summer, Ben encouraged her to pursue the business. The storefront became available Nov. 11.
Among the store’s offerings is jewelry, including items made from recycled magazines and glass along with carved PVC pipe glass; market baskets from Africa; knit hats from Ecuador; embroidered pillows from Peru; alpaca hand warmers; scarves from Thailand; and recycled gift bags from Nepal.
The handmade nature of items makes each just a little different, Woodruff said.
She can be contacted by calling 937-216-4160 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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