Following my Peace Corps service, I made the ambitious decision to launch Shea Yeleen, a social impact company that creates living wage jobs for women-owned shea butter cooperatives in Ghana. I was in my early 20s with very little business experience yet I was inspired by the hardworking women who are the backbone of the global shea butter supply chain. Through our business model we provide women access to capital, production tools, and processing centers that allow women to create value added body care products that we distribute through select Whole Foods Markets, MGM Resorts, and our website. Our community starts with the 800 producers in small rural communities in Africa and ends with our network of customers who care about buying nutritious body care products that make a difference.
Everyday Shea Yeleen challenges the societal limitations put on African women by connecting the producers of this amazing skin care product directly to our customers. Through ethically sourcing shea butter, cooperative members have the financial resources to invest in household needs, education for their kids, and other income generating activities. We show that women, when given access to the right opportunities, can become respected leaders in their families and their communities. Our story has been featured in several media outlets including O, The Oprah Magazine, The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, Washington Business Journal, MSNBC, and CNBC Africa.
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