ANAHEIM, Calif., March 9, 2015 – More than 520 women will have a chance to lift themselves out of poverty through microcredit, thanks to Whole Foods Market’s “Beauty in All Beings” event,held Friday, March 6, at Expo West in Anaheim, Calif.
Whole Foods Market hosted the benefit event in partnership with thinkThin and 22 other natural and organic brands to raise awareness and funds for Whole Planet Foundation, whose mission is to alleviate global poverty through microcredit. One hundred percent of the $100,000 raised will go to support the foundation’s micro-lending programs in 62 countries, including the U.S. The dollars raised are enough to fund 523 new loans to help an estimated 2,615 people worldwide.
“We are proud to feature Whole Foods Market’s apparel suppliers in this fashion show that directly benefits Whole Planet Foundation,” said Maren Giuliano, executive global Whole Body coordinator at Whole Foods Market. “One of our company’s core values is to create win-win partnerships with our suppliers, and this event is the perfect example of how our suppliers go above and beyond to support our foundation’s mission.”
Whole Foods Market co-CEO Walter Robb opened the event, followed by Whole Planet Foundation advisory board member Magatte Wade and Whole Planet Foundation’s executive director, Philip Sansone.
The show featured several brands, including Blessing Basket Project, Gaiam, Maggie’s Organics, PACT Apparel, prAna, Satva, Synergy Organic Clothing and Threads for Thought, with makeup and beauty support provided by Acure, Trilogy, Pacifica and Mineral Fusion. The show also featured a handful of items made with textiles from microcredit clients supported by Whole Planet Foundation and partners in Ghana, Guatemala, Thailand and Uganda. Some of the textiles were sourced by Whole Planet Foundation field team members, who dedicate their time to visiting microfinance partners and connecting with microcredit clients in their homes and businesses.
“By having skilled team members living and working in the communities where we support microcredit, we’re not only able to meet with microcredit clients face-to-face, but also bring their success stories home to share with all who support our cause,” Sansone said. “Showcasing the beautiful fabrics and tapestries created by women entrepreneurs we support through our microfinance partners was the highlight of Friday’s event. Whole Foods Market partners transformed these textiles into one-of-a-kind garments that really stole the show.”
The event was produced with support from thinkThin. Gold sponsors that donated $20,000 each included Hain Celestial (featured brands Alba Botanica, Avalon Organics and JÄSON), New Chapter and So Delicious. Silver sponsors that donated $10,000 each included Nordic Naturals and Nubian Heritage. Bronze sponsors that donated $5,000 each included ACURE, Burt’s Bees Baby, Cedar’s Mediterranean Foods, Gaiam, Golden Door, Gustus Vitae Salts & Spices, Lifefactory, Neocell, Paddywax, Papyrus-Recycled Greetings, SeaSnax, Seventh Generation, Threads for Thought, Wholesome Sweeteners and Zorbitz.