Empowering Chicks Helping the Third World

Sparkling passionfruit and guava prosecco, poached peach or caramelised pineapple and coconut pavlova? Empowering Chicks’ triple scented soy candles smell good enough to eat. Hand made by founders and Perth businesswomen Louise Garland, Katie Lefroy and Priscilla Hogan, the candles also come with a side of empowerment and a dash of luxury.

Founders Priscilla Hogan, Louise Garland and Katie Lefroy at Empowering Chicks HQ. Photo credit: Kimberley McGivern.

Founders Priscilla Hogan, Louise Garland and Katie Lefroy at Empowering Chicks HQ.
Photo credit: Kimberley McGivern.


One hundred percent of the businesses profits goes to educating of girls in the third world.

“We just want to inspire people,” Ms Hogan told ECU Daily. “If three chicks can change a little part of the world by making candles, then other people can change the world by buying a candle. It’s a simple process.” Ms Lefroy told ECU Daily, “It’s a double gift. You’re buying a luxury gift for yourself or a friend and giving the gift of education to someone else at the same time.”

“We currently help 362 girls between two schools, in Sierra Leone and Uganda,” Ms Garland told ECU Daily. “The schools don’t just teach the girls, they provide food and sanitary products too.”

According to the United Nations, Sierra Leone is one of the world’s poorest countries. Just 9.5 percent of adult women have a secondary education, 60 percent of the population live below the poverty line and life expectancy is 48. In Uganda, 17 percent of women enter secondary education, 19.7 percent of the population live below the poverty line and life expectancy is 63.

Empowering Chicks educates girls in these countries by purchasing scholarships that are provided by One Girl, a not-for-profit founded by teachers Chantelle Baxter and David Dixon. Passionate about helping women in the third world, but unsure where to start, Ms. Baxter and Mr. Dixon ventured to the poorest areas of Uganda. There they discovered young girls desperate for education, and One Girl was born.

“When I met the girls from One Girl last year, the charity really resonated with me,” said Ms Garland. “I remember thinking, ‘what do you do if you were a single mum, but didn’t have an education? How do you support yourself and your children?’ “Basically, these women in the third world are at the mercy of others. They have no control over their own lives.” Ms Lefroy said, “Often, girls in these countries are forced into marriage or have been raped."

“If these girls survive childbirth, they then have to worry about caring for and providing for their child. So, when you educate a girl, it starts a cycle of change. She will be more likely to educate her children, and they will educate theirs, and so on. So, if we can educate enough women, the hope is that it starts to change their whole country.”

The founders of Empowering Chicks aim to empower women in Australia as well as the third world. “It’s a multi-faceted business,” said Ms Garland. “It’s also about women empowering each other. I wanted to make a product that lifts women up, inspires them and connects them with other women. So, the look of the candles, and the inspirational quotes we put on them, are part of that.”

The business will have a stall at the Every Womens Expo from 16-18 June. “We are very excited!” said Ms Garland. "We will be launching our catalogue, and giving away some Sunday Brunch White Chocolate and Blueberry Muffin Melts.” The Every Women Expo, held annually at the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre, is Perth’s largest women’s lifestyle event. Entering its 19th year, the event will bring together 250 companies and businesses to showcase their best and newest products and services.

Ebony Grace, a Perth nurse, recently purchased a candle and told ECU Daily: “I’m hooked. The packaging is so beautiful and the smell is amazing. I really like the concept too, its inspiring and unique.”

Empowering Chicks poured their first candle on 8 October 2016, at Empowering Chicks HQ, otherwise known as Ms Garland’s garage. However, they will soon move their candle making enterprise elsewhere. “Because we all work full time, we do 12 hour shifts on Saturdays and Sundays, but we still can’t make enough candles. So, we got a small factory to come on board, so we can start churning out the candles and hopefully sell more. We will be able to make enough for businesses to start stocking our candles, which is a big step for us.”

The three founders are excited about growing their business, helping others and inspiring others to change the world.

“As I say to my son, I challenge you to do a better job than I can in this world. If I can change it, as a single mum working out of a garage, you can change the world too.”


Article written by Kimberley McGivern, Reporter for ECU Daily  
Original article published May 23, 2017

Original article link http://www.ecudaily.com.au/22072/news/empowering-chicks-helping-the-third-world/