4NORTH PROJECT co-founder Matt Gewirtz introduced the “Education4Everyone” project to Mrs. Friend’s 3rd-grade class at Central School in Owosso on Wednesday, Oct. 9. The Education4Everyone project stems from 4North’s first project, “Boxes4Bracelets,” which involved local students collecting cereal boxes. 4North would ship the boxes to Haiti, and Haitian artisans would use the cardboard to create bracelets which were then sent back to the local students. The students sold the bracelets, which helped fund educational efforts around the world and helped sustain 200 jobs for the artisans.
Since that project was such as success, 4North expanded their product line, now also offering items created by artisans from the Dominican Republic, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania. The wide range of unique items includes clay bracelets made in Haiti, canvas paintings made in the Dominican Republic and holiday ornaments made of banana fibers and sisal plant, such as the Father Christmas ornament Gewirtz displayed on Wednesday.
“Every product we sell has a story to tell,” Gewirtz explained. “This is really important; when you go home, please do not go home and just say, ‘mom, dad, buy a bracelet.’ We would rather have you share the story. We want to be a voice for Uganda, we want to be a voice for Haiti, Dominican Republic, Kenya and Tanzania.”
To learn more about The 4North Project or to support the Education4Everyone
project, visit www.4North.org.
(Independent Photo/Graham Sturgeon)