Rags2Riches Inc. is a profit-oriented social enterprise based in Manila, creating eco-ethical fashion and home accessories out of up cycled scrap cloth, organic materials and indigenous fabrics by working with artisans (mostly women) living in the poor communities across the country.
Rags2Riches Inc. was created to help these artisans with fair access to the market and the formal economy, to teach them additional skills, and to coach them in financial and health-training aspects so that they can maximize their career potential and take steps towards long-term financial and personal well-being.
R2R has already trained 800 artisans across 21 communities in the Metro Manila area and continues to expand its social impact and eco-ethical footprint in the country.
Grapa Manila – grapa means in Spanish staple or fastener – was founded in 2014 by two friends who previously both were bankers. They wanted to create a business that wouldn’t take them away from their families so they started designing, producing and selling shoes locally online. However their families grew and in 2016 they agreed to slow down and halt operations so they could focus on their children and other projects.
However in 2017 one of the two partners gained interest and appreciation in locally made native bags. She had the idea to start a business that will promote Philippine made products that are sustainable, and that would help support small communities, especially women, who like her, would want to work and take care of their families at the same time.
With permission of her previous partner she decided to continue Grapa Manila. Early 2017 she started meeting bag makers from different regions of the Philippines, collaborating with some in terms and designs and helped promote their products by selling them online through Grapa Manila.