Frankincense harvesters in Somalia have greater opportunities for income, thanks to doTERRA’s Co-Impact Sourcing. The initiative also provides doTERRA with access to skilled harvesters who help accomplish the intricate steps of harvesting the frankincense resin.
Previously, we’ve covered the benefits of frankincense as well as Co-Impact Sourcing. In this post, we delve into how doTERRA’s Co-Impact Sourcing is working to help the harvesters of frankincense in Somalia. The work of doTERRA in the area is bringing long-lasting, positive changes to the area.
Harvesting the frankincense resin requires careful planning and precise skill for this delicate process that can take five months or longer to complete. The harvesters must travel long distances, leaving their families and communities behind. Along the way, they often live in caves as they harvest frankincense resins from remote locations. After harvest, the resin is carefully cleaned, separated, and organized (by size and color) typically by women.
Despite the lengthy and demanding process, harvesters are often unable to sell their frankincense resins for a fair price. Because of the intense harvesting process and the lack of adequate payment, a significant portion of the available frankincense trees in Somalia has not been harvested.
The doTERRA Co-Impact Sourcing Initiative provides frankincense harvesters with fair wages and on-time payments (including food and cash prepayments spread out during the year). By working around the layers of middlemen, doTERRA works directly with those who harvest and sort the frankincense.
The arrangement provides a much more stable and reliable income to frankincense harvesters. In addition, doTERRA works to ensure the cleaning and sorting of the frankincense resins are as close to the harvesting locations as possible. By doing so, the job remains in rural areas where most needed to benefit the harvesting families.
Our initiative also ensures that these women receive fair wages and that they are able to work in more favorable working conditions. Along with these sustainable sourcing efforts, doTERRA has also funded the construction of two new schools for hundreds of students from harvester clans as well as help increase the supply of medicine and resources for the workers. The efforts are making a positive impact by improving the rural families’ livelihoods.
Co-Impact Sourcing Frankincense
David Stirling, doTERRA’s CEO and others talk about the company’s efforts to help create a robust frankincense economy, and long-term sustainability that works for the frankincense harvesters and workers. The 8-minute video below shows the harvesting of frankincense and how the lives of those working to harvest the resin are being affected.