Repurposed: The Story of Kitepride
For Tabea Oppliger, author and co-founder of fashion social enterprise KitePride, the Freedom Business journey began with a vision and determination to eradicate human trafficking and prostitution, one upcycled bag at a time.
The social enterprise first started off in 2014 by creating furniture from upcycled wooden pallets. However, the material proved unworkable. Undeterred, the company pivoted in 2016 to creating bags from upcycled fabrics from kitesurfing kites, sails, parachutes and wetsuits, inheriting the idea and label from Swiss kite surfer and designer, Rebekka Federer. KitePride exists to solve a gap within society and provides the missing link for men and women wanting to exit prostitution and stay out. For the 70% of men and women wanting to exit, finding a job is an almost impossible task as a lack of job experience closes doors. With financial pressure on their backs, many enter prostitution as a last resort. KitePride breaks this cycle by partnering with referring agencies to provide the missing safe rehabilitation and employment opportunities. Oppliger draws a parallel between social empowerment and environmental longevity.
Just as upcycling old and broken materials turns them into something new and beautiful, employing people with a broken history enables them to feel fresh, new, and empowered.”
Survivors and Those at Risk Employed: 25
Employee Services: 11859 hours of safe job rehabilitation, including employee care fund for education, healthcare, coaching and food.
Environment: Upcycled 712 kites, sails, parachutes and sails
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