Hand-woven Guatemalan fabric made into Hawaiian style shirts. Every shirt sold gives a child in Guatemala clean water for 2 years.
About this project
Aloha for People was created to help people. Our goal is to improve the lives of those around us, domestically and abroad. We believe in making stylish, unique Hawaiian style shirts that can help people in need.
Aloha for People was founded in the South Bay of Los Angeles by two California natives, Brian Poage and Emily Sansom. With Brian’s passion for Hawaiian shirts and Emily’s fashion background, they teamed up to create a company that not only makes rad shirts, but a company that helps people.
We feel compelled to help the people of Guatemala after learning more about the country over the past year and understanding the issues they face.
Guatemala is the most populous country in Central America with nearly 16 million people. About 54% of the population lives in poverty. Lack of food, water, and over exposure to disease make it very unsafe for Guatemalans. While the government and outside organizations have improved access to clean water in the country, there is still a lot of work that needs to be done. Nearly 95% of water in Guatemala is unsafe for human consumption. Aloha for People hopes to aid in the effort to provide access to clean water to those in need in Guatemala. We help in the following ways:
1. Using native hand-woven cotton fabric creates jobs for men and women in Guatemala
Our cotton fabric comes from the people of Guatemala. The patterns celebrate their culture and many depict their Mayan heritage. The cotton is durable, yet soft, and becomes softer as you wash it. These shirts will last longer than other shirts currently on the market. Women make up the majority of the people employed to make the fabric, which helps create jobs for them to support their families.
2. All of our shirts are made in downtown Los Angeles, USA
Aloha for People prides itself on creating jobs in both Guatemala and in the United States. All of our shirts are made in Los Angeles where our partner company ensures there are appropriate working conditions and fair wages are paid to all employees.
3. Using profits from every shirt sold, a child is given access to clean water for 2 years
We have partnered with the organization Ecofiltro to help people in the country of Guatemala. Ecofiltro provides water filtration systems that can be used in homes and schools that provide clean, drinkable water to people in Guatemala. They are based in the country and have been helping provide water since 2009. One of their systems costs $35 and provides water for 30 children.
They also educate the children and their families about the importance of clean water. To date, they have provided water in over 1,600 schools and helped over 500,000 people in Guatemala. Their goal is to provide access to clean water to 1 million people in rural communities in Guatemala by 2020, and we are here to help them reach that goal.
We chose the name Aloha for People because we love Hawaiian shirts. The traditional Hawaiian style shirts tell stories and depict certain emotions. We believe our shirts are able to accomplish this as well. Also, the term “Aloha” means much more than just hello and goodbye. “Aloha” represents many characteristics including love, kindness, mercy, and compassion. We are hoping to create a company that offers all of these emotions to people in need while also making some great shirts.
Aloha for People is threaded with purpose. We want anyone in our shirts to live their lives with purpose as well. See examples of our people living their lives with purpose below:
We now need your help Kickstarters to raise $25,000 to get our first line into production and to start helping people. This $25,000 covers the price for the fabric and manufacturing costs to make the shirts. Our first line will consist of 300 men’s and 300 women’s shirts in our 3 different styles. This first line will allow us to properly test the market and then we plan to expand. None of the funds raised via this Kickstarter campaign will be donated to charity. All of the money we donate to Ecofiltro will come out of our profits.
Our three patterns are:
Guatemala Night Sky
Guatemala is just the beginning. Aloha for People plans to build a brand that exists to help people all over the world. We want to utilize local fabrics and designs to make our Hawaiian style shirts and then give back to the people of the country. Our eyes are on Haiti and Nepal as expansion countries in the near future.
Please help us reach our goal so that we can all help provide water to those in need in Guatemala, and so we can make some rad shirts. Thank you for your help!
Risks and challenges
With every new clothing line, there are a number of risks involved. There may not be as large of a market for the style of shirts we make, we may not be able to keep up with current trends, and at the end of the day people may just not buy our shirts. We may be left with hundreds of unique Hawaiian style shirts that no one wants to buy.
However, this company is so much more than just an apparel company. We are providing a solution to a life-threatening problem in the world and are allowing other people in the United States and all over the world to be part of the solution, while also wearing shirts that have significance. We feel that this company has meaning and real promise which will allow us to succeed.