Why deux mains

As a disaster relief responder, founder Julie Colombino first visited Haiti in the wake of the devastating 2010 earthquake. Feeling lost amidst the devastation, she prayed and cried out for help. The only word she remembers hearing was “Listen.” And so she did. Not long after did a woman tell Julie, “I don’t want any water, but I need a job.” So, doing what any reasonable person would do, Julie sold everything she had, and moved to Haiti, where she set out on a mission to do just that - create business driven solutions for survivors. Having previously seen scrap tires used to create sandals in Malawi Africa, an idea took root. Haiti has refuse tires to spare - why not make sandals? The concept of deux mains was born.

We Empower Refugees

In collaboration with its nonprofit partner, REBUILD globally, deux mains has created a holistic business ecosystem that tackles the root cause of poverty by creating and maintaining jobs in Haiti. In partnership with the United Nations, REBUILD globally provides training and income generating opportunities for individuals at the border town refugee camp at Fonds Bayard. The refugees there learn the skills to transform refuse tires into the upcycled soles to be used in deux mains sandal production. This relationship creates a pipeline to employment, as refugees garner the necessary skills to eventually work for the deux mains workshop.

We Create Ethical Fashion

Nineteen degrees north of the equator in Port au Prince Haiti, you’ll find the deux mains workshop where our unique sandals begin to take shape. It is here where the tire soles crafted by the REBUILD globally refugees are paired with locally sourced leathers, fabrics, and findings, and brought to beautiful life by our talented artisans. It is here where the real magic happens: local talented artisan-owners design, source, craft and perfect every aspect of each individually crafted deux mains product. deux mains takes local and upcycled raw materials, and crafts sandals and dignified, sustainable jobs that provide living wages.

Your Purchase Makes an Impact

When our handmade products are finished, they find their way to you, our buyer through our online presence, or at our deux mains boutique located in Port au Prince, Haiti. Opened in July of 2013, our deux mains boutique offers the opportunity for locals and visitors alike to experience our unique, handmade products firsthand. This brick and mortar location is a beautiful physical example of our commitment to sustainability, and outreach, and an amazing opportunity to showcase the hard work of our talented employees and artisans.

Made to Engage. Made to Empower. Made in Haiti.

Whether online, or in person every purchase at deux mains makes a real difference. For every product sold we are able to grow and expand our outreach efforts and employment opportunities. Each and every part of our process was created to make the maximum impact. From the employment and job training programs with REBUILD globally, to the use of local and sustainable materials, and to the two hands that carefully construct each element of our finished products, we aim to raise the bar on what it means to be an ethical fashion company. Hand in hand, we are empowering the world’s most marginalized communities to become self-sufficient, restoring dignity to families and individuals. We have created a footwear brand that you can be proud to own. Every step you take in deux mains sandals turns poverty into prosperity.

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MADE IN HAITI