Gold often comes to mind when you think of luxury. Yet unfortunately, gold production can come at a cost to mining communities. The Earthbeat Foundation, which shares a founder with brand to trust Vieri, is working to improve this by ensuring gold is as ethical as it is beautiful.
Around twenty million people worldwide work in the artisanal mining industry, and one hundred million are indirectly involved in the supply chain. In some cases, entire towns and villages sustain themselves on gold alone.
The Earthbeat Foundation works to improve the industry, by raising awareness of ethically-mined gold and building more sustainable gold production chains. It helps improve the lives of mining communities, so you can have peace of mind when purchasing gold.
Guya Merkle is the brains behind both the Earthbeat Foundation and ethical jewellery brand Vieri. The foundation and brand share the same ethos – asking the question “shouldn’t a luxury product have a positive effect on everyone who comes into contact with it?”
The Earthbeat Foundation not only improves working standards through better safety clothing and equipment, it also finds ways to diversify income. An initiative that means communities are not wholly dependent on the gold industry.
For example, a bee-keeping project with miners in Busia, Uganda will soon see the town set up hives and train bee-keeping. The mining community can then produce a range of products, such as honey or beeswax, that increase the income possibilities for miners.
So how can you support the Earthbeat Foundation? Along with donating directly to its projects, you can choose jewellery that gives back. 10% of the retail price from each piece in Vieri’s Respect the Beautiful collection is donated to the Earthbeat Foundation.
Our favourite is this delicate disc pendant that can be engraved with a message of your choice. A perfect everyday luxury that improves lives as you’re wearing it.
If you enjoyed this, you might like to read Our Guide to Buying Ethical Jewellery.