“The business of business should not just be about money, it should be about responsibility. It should be about public good, not private greed,” Dame Anita Roddick, Human Rights Activist and founder of The Body Shop said. Her ‘give while we live’ mantra resonated throughout her The Body Shop days empowering professionals industry wide to invest in ingredients that nourish both body and soul in the most beautiful and ethical way possible.
Giving back today doesn’t get much closer to the source than Kahina. Founded by Katharine L’Heureux who discovered argan oil on her first visit to Morocco in 2007, this boutique skincare range, based around the skin nourishing benefits of this multipurpose oil, embodies her dedication to preserving indigenous people and culture, protecting the environment, and giving back at the source. To date, Kahina has donated 100 per cent of profits beyond operating costs to programmes that support the indigenous Berber women. L’Heureux continues to visit the co-operatives where the oil is sourced to ensure the fair and proper treatment of those who extract it – women whose signatures grace each package in the Kahina Giving Beauty line.
“The first thing to be aware of is the impact that ethical trading of argan oil has on the lives of the Berber women in rural Morocco,” L’Heureux explains. “A typical Berber woman’s day is filled with extremely labour-intensive manual chores to keep her family alive and fed. In addition to caring for her children, cleaning and cooking, her day will probably include getting water from the village well by donkey, bringing loaves of bread to the community oven for baking, walking miles to gather wood for cooking and hay to feed the livestock, carrying heavy loads on her back. She may have a couple of hours in the day to harvest and crack the nuts for argan oil. This is one of the very few opportunities a rural Berber woman has to earn money for additional basic needs, such as wool for weaving, fresh fruits and vegetables from the market, fabric for her clothes, or school supplies for her children.”