Project Latitude | A Brand That Belongs to Those Who Need It
Over the last few years, we have spent our vacations building homes in under-developed areas across the world on volunteer-build trips. All the trips we have done in the past relied on us as volunteers to come up with large amounts of funds, typically asking our family and friends, to finance the project. Also, our impact on these trips was limited to building a single house for one family. Project Latitude is our solution to the following problems:
1. How could we make volunteering trips more affordable?
2. How could we have a more lasting presence in these communities?
The concept is simple: Our products are tied to a community for as long as they are sold. The community will inspire the product design, make the products and they will be the sole recipients of the funds raised from the sales.
Each project will have a fundraising goal. We are architects, so every project will respond to the communities’ construction needs. Since this particular project is a build, let's say it's a certain amount of bricks needed to be raised. Every product we sell will count towards this fundraising goal.
Each product is tied to the community for its lifetime. So when we start a new project, it will be with an entirely new line of products – based on the culture of this new community.
Our first product is the result of a trip to Ecuador, where we were inspired by the Andean culture and lifestyle. We fell in love with the rich colors and textures of the local fabric, which inspired us to design a backpack to help raise our funds.
The Chaski Backpack is an all-purpose roll-top backpack designed for people like us, one that could be used in the city AND on adventurous weekend getaways.
Each Chaski is individually handmade in Ecuador. Chaski means messenger in Quichua - the local Andean language.
All products are stamped with the latitude coordinate where the product is from. The Chaski has 00 for Ecuador.
Anyone can track the impact the sales are making as well as track the overall progress of the project on our website. Each product will also come with a tag about the members of the community.
Our hope is to create a brand that will ultimately impact communities across Latin America by rethinking the way volunteer projects are funded.
While many other companies offer to donate a portion of their proceeds to a good cause, Project Latitude actually takes the funds - or bricks in this case - and builds the project!
With the help of volunteers, Project 00 will build an entrepreneur workshop in the community of La Isla outside Quito, Ecuador. This will provide the community with much needed space for production, which in turn will empower the workers and the community as a whole.
Risks and challenges
We are architects/designers - we have full confidence in the process of designing the products as well as organizing the physical build. Bag production is new to us, but we've been working with the manufacturers for close to a year. We've adjusted the backpack's design many times to arrive at our final product. Despite best intentions, manufacturing complications and delays can occur when dealing with overseas logistics. We will make sure to notify all our backers of any changes in the delivery process.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)