We have been taking quite a breather over here from writing as we get settled into our new home. On top of that it’s summer, and every time I think our summer is going to be less busy, that just isn’t the case. We don’t try to cram too much in, but in reality, between honing routines we’ve gotten slack in, packing and unpacking, VBS, getting fresh air and exploring our new neighborhood, well, the days fill up fast.

But I’m still on a mission to share with you all what we are learning and how we are growing and especially the most awesomest fair trade companies out there who are making a huge impact with their products.

Today I am delighted to bring you Starfish Project. You know my heart for human trafficking victims – both in helping to spread awareness for the sheer amounts of people who are being trafficked, and in sharing the stories of redemption and hope in the lives of those who have been and are being rescued.

starfish-project restoring hope

Starfish Project is involved both in providing opportunities for women to heal and grow through counseling, vocational training and learning new languages, access to grants for family education and health care, as well as housing in a women’s shelter.

In 2007 the Project opened a jewelry business to provide an alternate source of income for the women in the shelter. By participating in various aspects of jewelry making and distribution, each woman earns a salary that keeps them off the street and in a healthy and life-giving working environment. The profits from the sales of jewelry support the women of Starfish Project and help create for the women a stable environment and financial independence.

The jewelry the women make is beautiful, unique and reminds me every time I wear it that my purchase made a difference. Starfish Project cares about each “one” who is helped through their company and programs.

Between you and me, we can’t solve the problem of human trafficking. But the purchases we make can and do make a difference in the life of one, or two, or three women AND their families, and that’s definitely something worth fighting for.

Starfish Project transformation

Here’s a little bit more from Starfish Project about who they are, what they do, and why:

Starfish Project – Hope for the One

How was Starfish Project birthed?

The vision of Starfish Project was born in 2006 with a small group of people who had a heart to reach the exploited women they saw in the city of Beijing, China.

They began to walk through the streets where the women were selling themselves and to visit with the women working in the brothels. As they talked with the women and gained their trust, they learned of the women’s need for healthy and stable employment in order to find a new life.

Starfish Project these eyes

Over time, some of the women came to trust the group enough to leave their old life and come live in the Starfish shelter.  Eventually, the idea for a jewelry business in order to employ as many exploited women as possible was born.

Starfish Project is committed to restoring hope for each woman that enters its doors. The organization provides opportunities for women to heal and grow through counseling, vocational training, classes in computer skills and other subjects, family education support and health care access.

The socially responsible jewelry business continues to expand in order to provide women with stable, healthy jobs. Through Starfish’s vocational training and practical job experience, many women have developed skills that allow them to be promoted within the company to positions of great leadership and responsibility. Some women have also used the experience they gained at Starfish to find professional jobs at other companies.

Starfish Project dreams

What model do you follow for the production and sale of your jewelry?

Over the years, Starfish Project has grown to include three locations in China.  The US office is also an integral part of sustaining the work in China.

Starfish project jewlery

Women are employed by Starfish Project to produce the stock for sales. This is mainly done at the Starfish headquarters, as well as our other two branches. The production team at our headquarters in Asia is responsible for designing, marketing, production, packaging, and quality inspection and shipping.

Products are then sold both within Asia and overseas. In Asia, products are sold at small business, through bookstores, sales events, jewelry parties and citywide bazaars and fairs. Starfish Project also fills wholesale orders that are sent to the US, the UK and Switzerland.

Outside of Asia, Starfish Project’s main sales center is in the United States. US sales are done through the Starfish Project website, conferences and individually hosted parties.

starfish project advocate

In October of 2010, Starfish launched its Advocate of Hope Independent Representative Program. Men and women can sign-up to become an Advocate, buy a starter kit and begin selling Starfish Products. Project Advocates earn a 25% commission by purchasing stock at a discounted rate and selling it at the stated retail price. This allows individuals overseas to earn extra income while supporting a great cause and personally helping to restore hope to exploited women.

Starfish Project Greta Tea Rose necklace

{Find out more about how you can become an advocate for Starfish Project, whether you’re a blogger, fundraiser, like to throw parties or are just passionate about trafficking survivors!}

What is your long term goal for the women who join with Starfish Project?

At Starfish Project, the women are involved in all areas of the business. They help pick out the materials as well as making the jewelry itself.


We provide a stable job with a monthly salary to any woman coming out of prostitution or trafficking who wants a job, regardless of education, skills or experience.  Within this job are opportunities for on-the-job training and vocational advancement, not just in jewelry making but later on in other areas such as quality control, inventory management, shipping/exporting, leadership and management of other employees.  Some have also been trained in and taken on other roles such as bookkeeper/cashier and assistant to the graphic designer.

Starfish Project every woman valued

The women can work at Starfish Project as long as they like.  Our mission is to provide healthy employment to women, and as such, it is not a program that they need to graduate out of. 

They do grow into increasing levels of health, stability and independence, and contribute to the company as leaders at higher levels as they do so. Our long term goal for the women is to see them be empowered to go on and lead fulfilling lives. Some

What would you say to encourage someone wondering how they can start making a difference in the way they shop or think about shopping?

One person can truly make a difference and Starfish Project is the perfect example of one person who wanted to do something and make a difference.

Some of my favourite pieces from Starfish Project:

Greta Tea Rose Necklace

starfish project greta tea rose necklace


Hadley Earrings

Starfish Project Hadley earrings



Amanda Necklace

Starfish Project freshwater pearl necklace


Amy Bracelet


Starfish Project Amy bracelet

Your little girls won’t feel left out either as Starfish Project has a great selection of jewelry for them as well!

Starfish Project girls jewelry




Starfish Project girls Marley bracelet