Muddy Lotus School
We make every decision based on what will MOST benefit small-scale miners and their communities.
The diamond industry is a juggernaut that at times seems immune to change. But when we take a step back and look at the enormous potential — to do good, to give back, to really make a difference in the lives of those overlooked for so long — our motivation to move forward with The Clarity Project despite immense challenges is all too clear. We understand we cannot change the entire diamond industry, but we're committed to creating an alternative.
Many people choose not to buy a diamond for fear of contributing to corruption or worse. We understand this reaction, and even shared it at one point. However we've come to believe that this is not the best solution. More than two million people working in the informal artisanal (alluvial diamond digging) sector rely on demand for their livelihood. Eliminating their livelihoods is not really an answer — this just adds stress to already over-stressed societies. Only by supporting fair employment in rural communities, investing in education, and rehabilitating natural ecosystems, can we hope to reduce exploitation, urbanization, and poverty.
To this end, The Clarity Project creates impact through two primary processes: fairly sourcing and manufacturing our products, and responsibly investing our profits.
The Clarity Project sources materials with the goal of opening up new market opportunities for responsible artisanal initiatives. We source our diamonds, gems, and metals from micro-scale and local small-scale operators and cooperatives, two structures that are seen to have "the biggest empowerment and development impact," according to a feasibility study commissioned by TransFair USA. For instance, we are proud supporters of a womens' diamond digging cooperative in Lesotho, Fair Trade Gold from Latin America, and Fair Made manufacturing in South Africa. Sourcing is critical, however, our commitment goes much further.
Click Here To Download Our Levels of Sourcing (PDF)
We guarantee that The Clarity Project invests 100% of net profits back into mining communities. We invest responsibly with non-profit organizations working within mining communities in Sierra Leone, and soon South Africa. By investing in mining communities, we hope to create new educational opportunities and alternative livelihood options for the communities' future generations, thereby breaking the harmful cycle of extractive economies.
The Clarity Project measures success by the number of children educated, crops planted, and health clinics opened, rather than solely relying on market share and profits. We work closely with non-profit partners who track, evaluate, and make on-the-ground decisions about impact potential. In 2009, the year of our founding, we were able to generate enough profits from sales to pay for teachers' salaries at the Muddy Lotus Elementary School in Bongema, Sierra Leone. This year we will contribute to several innovative environmental and microfinance programs and are forming new partnerships stretching from South Africa to Colombia.
We are honored and thrilled to share a close partnership with Shine on Sierra Leone (SOSL), founded by Tiffany Persons as "a human service foundation that provides education, mentoring and nutritional support to African mining schools." Considering that it takes only US $8 per month to send a child to school in Sierra Leone, we can really make an impact. With staff in both the U.S. and Sierra Leone, SOSL has most recently completed the first environmentally sustainable building project in Sierra Leone: a school. By doing so, SOSL is not only building a sheltered space for students to learn, but also training a team of sustainable builders.
Together with our customers' and partners' shared excitement in both our products and mission, The Clarity Project's positive impact in mining communities will continue to grow. With the understanding that we are far from perfect, we are always open to new ways of giving back, monitoring progress, and increasing our positive impact. We hope you will join us!