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Should we choose between reducing poverty and being ecological?

YounSone by Fondacio , a young social enterprise created in Myanmar by Julia Naw, trains and employs young women to reduce precariousness and poverty . YounSone sources traditional fabrics directly from the weavers and enhances them by making contemporary items. The products are sold locally and also in France through the Fondacio network and on DreamAct .

Is it responsible and ecological to sell products from Myanmar in France?
Shouldn’t we favor “made in France” instead of buying masks, clothes or cushions that YounSone offers?

The “Made in France” reality and the carbon impact

Very few textile products are 100% made in France: cotton is not grown in France ( even if there are conclusive tests ) and comes mainly from Asia, as do most of the threads, zips and other components. . The designation ‘Made in France’ only means that the last stage of the product was carried out in France and is therefore misleading as to the true origin of the products.

Another reality: France is the leading flax producer, but the spinning mills are in Poland and China! And the yarns or fabrics are then imported again.

Today, there are practically no new textile products entirely made in France . Therefore, if we compare new textile products and YounSone products, they have a comparable carbon impact (even lower for YounSone) even if they are 8000 km from France.

In addition, the last kilometers of a product are the most polluting: in Paris, deliveries would be responsible for 25% of greenhouse gas emissions! Several explanations are possible, in particular poorly optimized routes and fillings, but also customers who are often absent so the delivery route takes place more than once.

Fair pay for women

Myanmar is one of the poorest countries in Southeast Asia along with Bangladesh. In particular, the situation of women is very difficult and their rights are limited by tradition.

Need we remind you that the rest of the world is very different from France: there is no universal social security, no unemployment, no RSA, etc.? In Myanmar, as in many countries, without work, there is no food, without money there is no medical treatment.

Impact for weavers

YounSone buys its fabrics directly at the right price from the women who weave – for example in refugee camps, victims of internal civil wars or villages.

Other fabrics are purchased from small family businesses that collect and sell the production of village women.

We thus contribute to limiting the rural exodus and therefore CO2 emissions by generating income and we support the integral development of villages and education to give young people prospects.

Impact for seamstresses

YounSone has created jobs for young women in precarious situations in Yangon and Myitkyina in Myanmar. Thus they have access to a stable and decent job. By working these beautiful fabrics from their own heritage, they develop new skills and acquire pride in the craftsmanship of their country.

YounSone makes it a point of honor to help each person develop their human and professional potential. YounSone helps its interns and employees grow. Everyone participates in continuous training to improve their English and other skills of their choice in connection with our training center ( YLDC by Fondacio ). In this way, women go from sewing to creating new designs and managing and marketing our products.

Impact for solidarity consumers

With its handcrafted products, YounSone educates its customers about a way of life that is more respectful of human beings and the planet.

– It is not a question of quantity, but of quality so as not to overproduce. YounSone products are made to last and not be consumed.

-It is also a question of helping women in a precarious situation and not of making a profit. It is a solidarity purchase.

Products designed with integral ecology in mind

“We need a more responsible global reaction, which involves at the same time the fight for the reduction of pollution and the development of poor countries and regions.”

Laudato Si, Pope Francis

In his encyclical Laudato Si, Pope Francis recalls that it is important to reduce pollution but also to offer development solutions to poor countries, and it is really with this vision that YounSone develops its products.

From Asia to France, YounSone tries to find the best compromise between quality, respect for the environment and ethics for each of its manufacturing and distribution stages in order to raise awareness among producers and consumers. YounSone also promotes local consumption in Myanmar through the various outlets in the country.

Our ambition is not limited to ecology and nature conservation but takes into account the reality of rural and poor areas.

To go deeper

For those who wish to pursue the reflection on the link between ecology and poverty , we recommend the reading of the Encyclical Laudato Si’ of Pope Francis. (Here in French)

“The poorest regions and countries have fewer opportunities to adopt new models to reduce the impact of human activities on the environment, because they do not have the training to develop the processes needed, and they cannot afford the cost. This is why it is necessary to keep clear the awareness that, in climate change, there are diversified responsibilities and, as the Bishops of the United States have expressed it, we must focus “especially on the needs of the poor, the weak and vulnerable, in a debate often dominated by the most powerful interests”. We need to reinforce the awareness that we are one human family. There are no borders or political or social barriers that allow us to isolate ourselves, and for that very reason, there is no room for the globalization of indifference either. »

Follow the development of YounSone on Facebook & Instagram .

Yvonne Altorfer, board member of Fondacio has supported YounSone since its inception.

Lucie Tailhades, partner and project coordinator for TrendEthics , which sets up weaving cooperatives in Southeast Asia.

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