Transparend company- know more, get dressed better

Transparend company- know more, get dressed better: Check how transparent is your T-shirt!

PolandPoland
Year Founded:
2003
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
Start-Up
Budget: 
$50,000 - $100,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

The apparel industry is periodically shaken by scandals. To resolve such problems companies should be transparent. We will help the participating companies to be changemakers and to build their policy in this area.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

what if consumers cares about how their clothes were made, have tools to check it and information about clothes company are transparent and easy to identify?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

The apparel industry is periodically shaken by scandals connected either with the fact that in the production process there is a breach of labor rights, or indifference to humanitarian catastrophes or other HR abuses. As a result, the consumers who want to make ethical choices (whose number increases) are not sure how to take a decision (which factors should be taken into account). On the other hand the companies have to struggle lack of trust.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

To resolve such problems companies should be proactive in delivering information and focused on improving human rights standards in their activities. As a target group we have chosen Polish companies. We will provide information on human rights standards included in the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, run discussion on ethics in business and transparency as a prerequisite to the fulfillment of all standards. This is why we will offer the training and common work on communication of transparency policy. We will help the participating companies to be changemakers and to build their policy on these assumptions. They will work with local people working for transparency to provide feedback to the companies’ strategies.

Awards

This is a new project with no awards. But our Program Director is an Ashoka Fellow 2009.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

We want companies to be aware of what standards they should follow (training), let them reflect on it (discussion) and prepare communication and policy on presenting their standards and policies of remediation. As transparency had been acknowledged to me a prerequisite to implement all other standards, our main role will be to advice on how to be transparent to reach people, get them engaged and improve company behavior in a way that allows to build trust. Consulting will be provided to 8 Polish companies by local people active in our network. They are are experienced in checking how transparent public administration is. They know what to pay attention for and make a free-of-charge audit of a company.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

We can only think about the future. 8 companies will have policies that will be transparent and will improve human rights standards in their production. In a three – four years a few of them will receive information on possible breaches of human rights in their delivery chain and will react. We will work out new case to promote the idea of transparent and responsive business making. In a longer term these companies will win on the market as those who are responsible transparent and those who made a change. They will also set standard to the whole industry. However as pioneers they will have a network of local people who are not bought but convinced.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

The goal of a project is to change a policy of Polish apparel industry in 5-10 years. It concerns both – those who produce in Poland and those who produce abroad. The goal is to be transparent, to have good communication, to allow for remediation and, above all, to observe human rights. The strategy is to support the chosen group of 8 companies and to monitor their activities (which is a natural way of our people work). They will also do it after project finshes on the voluntary basis. This is how they work on the everyday basis.
Sustainability

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

This is a single project. We assume that the policy is implemented. Later on people will guarantee making use of it. Our people will monitor twice a year whether or not the policy is available and how it works.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

This is a new idea in Poland. There is a few organizations that promote aware choice of apparel company e.g. „Aktywni obywatele na rzecz odpowiedzialnej mody” (Active citizens for responsible fashion), alemoda.pl, Kupuj odpowiedzialnie (Buy responsibly), www.ekonsument.pl/ubrania, "Moda na CSR, CSR w modzie (Fashion for CSR, CSR in fashion), Clean Clothes Poland http://cleanclothes.pl/. We will invite these Initiatives. Our added value is that we have 12 years of experience in transparency building and a broad network of local people.
Team

Founding Story

We started to think on testing a transparency model during a workshop by SOMO on UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights. All participants discovered as some moment that transparency is a prerequisite to guarantee other rights. Then we started to think that we should start to talk to companies to prove their good intentions through the transparency.

Team

Project coordinator - full-time in organization. She has been coordinated few project from the creation of the project. Assistant to project coordinator. Half time. Local auditors. Part time.
Value Chain: Where does your work fit into the apparel value chain? [check all that apply]

Raw Materials.

Your Role: What is your relationship to the apparel industry? [check all that apply]

Non-profit Staff.

Target Population: What stakeholder groups do you engage or empower in your work? [check all that apply]

Consumers, Corporations, Factory Owners.

● Intervention Focus: What are you trying to achieve / influence? [check all that apply]

Accountability, Environmentally Sustainable Practices, Transparency.

Lever for Change: Select up to 3 ways your work is helping to transform the industry.

Advocacy, Policy, Standards.

Is your project targeted at solving any of the following key barriers?

Consumers Aren't Motivated to Care: Neither Compelling Reasons Nor Easy Means to Change Consumption Habits.

Does your project utilize any of the innovative design principles below?

Innovation Inspiration: When you first conceived of your project, did you think of it as applicable to the apparel industry?

yes

If you answered "no" to the previous question, which industry was your project originally aimed at transforming?

● Replicating in the Apparel Industry: If your project didn't initially target the apparel industry, how are you specifically tailoring it to do so now?
Are you nurturing or inspiring others to be changemakers? If so, how?
● Tell us about the partnerships that enhance your approach. How have you collaborated with others in the industry to increase your impact?

We will collaborate with Polish Institute for Human Rights and Business (PIHRB), http://pihrb.org/english/