Store teams with Canadian Network for International Surgery

Women in poor countries will benefit from special fundraiser at Ten Thousand Villages.

Around the world, women are among the poorest members of society, yet their income is essential for the well-being of families. Since 1946, fair trade handicrafts retailer Ten Thousand Villages has been creating employment opportunities for women in developing countries.

In fact, 70 per cent of Ten Thousand Villages’ artisans are women, so working with the Canadian Network for International Surgery feels like a perfect fit — especially on International Women’s Day, said sales development manager Kristen Reffle.

The Canadian Network for International Surgery trains midwives, nurses and doctors, as well as medical and clinical officers, to bring lifesaving surgical and emergency obstetrical training to Africans.

Over the last 16 years, CNIS and Ten Thousand Villages partners have trained almost 20,000 health care practitioners and certified approximately 600 surgical, obstetrical and nursing instructors in eight African countries, as well as in Guyana and Haiti.

John Bell, the honorary consul of Cote d’Ivoire in Vancouver, said that during his term as Canadian ambassador, he came to know and greatly respect the peoples of sub-Saharan Africa.

“They face huge challenges in maternal health care and trauma. CNIS volunteers are making important contributions through their life-saving surgical teaching program and the support of the development of local capacity,” Bell said.

Ten Thousand Villages Canada has teamed up with CNIS, and on Thursday, March 8, 15 per cent of all purchases made with a coupon will go towards help to prevent maternal mortality in Africa through the CNIS.

Partnership coupons are available online at and

The Langley location of Ten Thousand Villages is at 20525 Fraser Hwy.

Pop-up banner image ×