Dublin-based soap company inspires fresh approach to inclusivity

by Rachel Darcy

An innovative Dublin enterprise is working to promote self-care with a progressive business angle, with their products created by those working to conquer addiction or living with disabilities.

We Make Good, a social enterprise, produce a range of hand-crafted soaps and other self-care products. Now, they have teamed up with ChildVision and Coolmine Theraputic Community for a new range, Soap with Soul, which offers a utilitarian approach to tackling issues of inclusivity.

Intended to ‘wash away’ the stigma of disability and addiction, Soap with Soul intends to aid in paving the way for more inclusive and enterprising Ireland. The project comes at a time when Covid-19 is sweeping through Irish communities, and has pushed vulnerable individuals to the fringes.

Soap with Soul is innovative in its approach, working to empower those working with them to challenge and redefine the damaging perceptions society has of those conquering addiction or living with disabilities, and also their perception of themselves.

Caroline Gardner, Co-founder of We Make Good, said: “Covid has really shown us that we need to change the way we prioritise the environment and work for a more equal society, where we focus on leaving no-one behind. These soaps exemplify these communal values in a really tangible way.

“They each come with a little story in the wrapper of how the project supports the makers to reach their potential, making them a really inspiring gift for this Christmas.”

The brand provide on-the-job training to the makers, as well as an income, and aims to maintain steady employment for those involved, or provide support to those taking part should they wish to move on to mainstream employment.

ChildVision’s Lifelong Learning students, aged 18-23 years, have been working on valuable enterprise projects such as soap-making for some time, but partnering with ‘We Make Good’ gives them the opportunity to collaborate together and have a direct connection to the public, a space to showcase all their hard work and see it sell.

“For many young people with sight loss and additional disabilities, once they finish their time with ChildVision there are very few further education or employment options available to them. This project is about harnessing their creativity and letting them, and the wider community, appreciate their ability to create something beautiful and useful.

“The knowledge that they can do something of value brings a real sense of purpose and that can be, quite literally, life changing” Amanda Deaton, Project Lead, Lifelong Learning, ChildVision.

This view is also reflected in the experience of Coolmine, an addiction treatment provider that believes that everyone should have the opportunity to overcome addiction and lead a fulfilled and productive life. Coolmine provides a range of quality community and residential services to empower people and their families to overcome addiction and support long-term recovery.

The range is made with locally sourced botanicals – and they’re sustainable, all natural and made by hands, not machines.

For more information and to purchase the products, see We Make Good’s website here.

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