Frequently Asked Questions:
Where do you work?
We have friends all over the world but our office is in San Diego, California. It’s not a bad place to call home and form here we are able to help our friends all over the world.
Who do you partner with?
We choose to partner with a range of grass-roots projects, social enterprises, and budding entrepreneurs. In this way we have a constant variety of product and stock available to our online customers. From the hand poured candles, leather products, and woven baskets, we hope you will see it all as not only “made in” but “made with love”. Each partner and their products make a difference in the lives of those they support.
How do you know it makes an impact?
We have relationships with each organization or individual. We scale our partners systematically, so we are able to vet and work with each one to understand their programs and capacity.
For non-profits we trust that they are able to achieve their mission with more funding and job creation. We like to work with their marketing directors or coordinators to share success stories and hear updates – both personally and professionally fun! Knowing that moving more product helps the programs, creates jobs, and helps keep their directors or counselors focused on impact.
For budding entrepreneurs, our favorite underdogs and champions of change, we work one-on-one. We will also partner with a local community micro-finance groups, Rotarians, or community ambassadors. We want to make sure we not only manage expectations but the larger orders that create an influx of capital are re-invested and managed to create a long-term upward trajectory. We want to make sure they are able to fill the next order too!
Are you Fair Trade?
We are not certified at this time but work with many organizations that are. We also want to be able to work with small artisans and entrepreneurs who do not have access to certification (which can be costly). We apply many of the same principals including paying fair prices and putting up at least half the cost up front. We are always looking for a long term win for our partners in order to create a stable and consistent access to market.
Is Branch Out Market a non-profit?
Branch Out Market is social enterprise, registered as an LLC. In order to build a long-term solution, we have built a market independent of donations or subsidies. This aids our partners with a long-term access to market and helps them grow in a true supply-and-demand economy.
Are these products handmade?
Under each partner page we identify how their products are made. Most are handmade items, however, other partners have elected to work with manufacturers to personalize their product lines. Please read the descriptions per partner to learn more about their unique products.
How much does the partner or artisan make? How much of your revenue goes to charity?
Branch Out Market purchases in advance at asking price. Branch Out Market will cover shipping, import duties, and additional marketing expenses to get the products ready-to-ship. Each purchase makes a difference and builds long-term relationships and revenue streams for our partners.
Check out our blog for more updates on how your purchases make a difference.
If I purchase more than one item will they ship together?
We hold all inventory in one centralized place. This way we are able to ship your entire order at once. We can also do gift wrapping if you select that option at checkout. Being web based and physically in one place allows our partners to focus on their mission or craft and allows us to focus on the business end of things. We see this as a win for our partners, for us, and for our customers!
How long does it take my purchase to ship from overseas?
Good news, it’s already here! We pre-purchase all our items from overseas in order to give our customers the convenience of quick shipping. This means we are ready for your order!
Why don’t these vendors sell in their local marketplace?
Many do… but the occasional tourist or passerby cannot support growth for the business. Many of our partners dream big. They are solving big issues like fighting poverty, ending abuse, micro-financing villages, teaching skills, and more. These are not small missions and require a larger market for sustainable impact. Plus, we are glad they are willing to share their creativity with us and allow more of the world to support their businesses and social enterprises.
Options Clinic sells handmade cards, as we increase their sales they are able to bring on more women into the support group system.
Hope Art employs local women and uses the proceeds of their business to support The Zambia Project – an orphanage for children in Zambia. The wider their market the better care they can provide and outreach into the community as well.
WomenCraft makes hand-made baskets, the more demand we create the more women they are able to train and buy baskets from, creating income and opportunities for the women in Tanzania.
Each partner has a story and we encourage you to get to know them on our partners page.
Can I do more?
Sure thing! Drop us a note in the comment box or contact us page and let us know your thoughts. We thrive on collaboration so would love to hear from you.
Want to donate? Branch Out Market does not accept donations but many of our non-profit partners do. Check out their pages or social media for donate buttons.
I’m interested in volunteering with one of your partners, can you help connect us?
Yes, that’s great. As passionate travelers ourselves we agree that volunteering abroad (or locally) is one of the best ways to experience a new culture, learn about others, and make awesome friends all over the world… how do you think this started?! Let us help you get in touch. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or queries … we promise to be biased and encourage you to travel!