From her own travelling experience, Teejana Beenessreesingh, founder of BeeJooS, found that established handicraft retailers who buy and rebrand the artisan’s handicrafts works were ripping off small artists.
“In addition to showcasing the unique craftsmanship of artisans from across the world, we fulfill our social responsibilities towards these artisans' local communities and donate a percentage of revenues to the local charities that address the most pertinent, ground-level social and economic issues of these communities,” Beenessreesingh said.
It also sells of locally made bracelets and the sales go to charity.
“One bracelet sold can keep a girl in school for 1 month,” Beenessreesingh explained.
The site has made progress in Kenya by supporting a school the in Masai Mara.
“We travel to the corners of the globe in search of one of a kind statement pieces, made by local artisans and emerging designers,” she said. “I was most fascinated by the artisan women and children and fell in love with their craft. I wanted to enable these women to sustain themselves in a guaranteed way by providing a channel of sales.
BeeJooS, a fully-fledged ecommerce platform where buyers can order what they fancy, showcases some of the fashion accessories from across the world.
The site also promotes locally jewelry and craftworks, giving the artists a way of exposing their works, talents and a means to earn a living.
The Internet has been a big channel to drive the idea of the site forward. Beenessreesingh told HumanIPO that the sales for the site have been impressive with most of the customers buying from the platform originating from North America.