Enrique Rodriguez
CFO and Co-Founder
Someone Somewhere
/
Expert Contributor

Strong Partnerships and Goodwill Can Lead to SDG 2030 Achievement

By Enrique Rodríguez Aréchiga | Thu, 02/17/2022 - 09:00

With less than 10 years to go, the world must accelerate its actions to solve the world’s biggest challenges. The UN Sustainable Development Goals 2030 (SDGs) were established in 2015 and are a call for action by all countries to protect the planet, and end poverty and injustice through different strategies. These goals are not only for governments; they should also be addressed by local authorities, the private sector, academia and civil society.

I’m sure that partnering for the Goals can create the solution we need to assure a better future for all of us. Therefore, at Someone Somewhere, we created a long-term project that can be seen as a successful case study that aims to reach the SDGs with creativity and passion.

Someone Somewhere and Delta Air Lines have joined forces to transform the reality of 150 Mexican artisans and their families, while creating the artisan-made amenity kit that passengers will receive at their Delta One seats. Like many people, you may ask yourself: How could you achieve the production of millions of artisanal bags that will be flying around the world? The short answer is: with a strong partnership, goodwill, and a lot of work.

At Someone Somewhere, we have the mission to contribute to the well-being of artisanal communities by integrating their traditional work into innovative products that generate fair and constant job opportunities for them. We empower artisans to break their cycle of poverty by doing the work they love. So, when Delta learned about us in a travel magazine, they understood that our purpose was perfectly aligned with their Diversity, Equity and Inclusion commitments. When they contacted us, we were surprised by their request: an order for 3.5 million amenity bags in a year was massive; and, therefore, the social impact too. Everything started making a lot of sense for both parties, so we started planning to make the idea a reality.

In the product development process, Delta wanted us to go further. They asked us to create the most sustainable product possible in a two-month time frame. Our design team developed an amazing collection of amenity bags, aligned with the sustainability commitments of both companies, aiming at the net-zero 2030 goal.

Thanks to all the artisanal work generated and the materials used in the product design, this partnership is aligned with these seven UN Sustainable Development Goals:

17- Partnerships for the Goals: Our joint commitment to sustainability is achieved through a detailed focus on cultural celebration, eco-friendly production, economic growth, and social awareness.

12- Responsible Consumption and Production: We designed a durable Amenity Kit with natural materials, getting rid of plastics and useless packaging. The artisan fabric is made from recycled threads and is woven in a traditional pedal loom that does not require electricity, just men and women power. Ninety-thousand pounds of one-use plastic will be avoided.

10- Reduced Inequalities: The artisanal fabric production is done in Oaxaca and Michoacan by 130 artisans, while the industrial assembly is done in Puebla and Hidalgo, among the poorest states in Mexico. The whole project benefits around 250 people directly and another 750 indirectly.

8- Decent Work and Economic Growth: We are dignifying handmade work in a modern world that tends to substitute humans with machines. The artisans have created a strong union under the social economy principles, fostering economic development for small family businesses, students, and single mothers in vulnerable communities. In a year, we will create more than 500,000 hours of artisanal work, which has never been done before in these communities.

5- Gender Equality: The pedal loom is traditionally a male-dominated activity but this project has achieved the integration of women into the production process for the first time, challenging gender norms and providing constant labor for a new generation of female artisans.

3- Good Health and Well-being: The pedal loom is an artisanal technique that helps combat obesity due to the physical exercise required. Further, the pedal loom enables flexible working conditions for single mothers, women, and underprivileged youth to have a great work-life balance.

1- No Poverty: Thanks to this long-term project, we are ensuring fair and constant work that enables artisans in marginalized communities to earn an income above the poverty line, so they can finally thrive.

Each amenity bag has an internal label with the name of one of the Someones who created the product. That label is linked to our Meet the Artisan Platform where the photo and a brief story of each artisan can be found. Passengers can even leave a message for the artisan who made their bag, and we will make sure they receive it.

This bag also contains more than simple amenities for a flight: it has personal stories, hard work, and the dreams of many Someones who participated in their creation. It is a symbol of holistic sustainability because it integrates cultural, social, economic, and environmental aspects.

We want this partnership to inspire you and each global passenger to make a difference in the world, by consuming responsibly and by joining the Sustainable Development Goals by sharing time, knowledge, and resources for social and environmental causes. Now is the time to face and tackle global challenges together. Poorer people and the planet cannot wait any longer.

For more information visit: delta.someonesomewhere.com

Photo by:   Enrique Rodriguez