In the Twi language of Ghana, efie means “home.” When Efie co-founder, Mwai Yeboah arrives home with her husband, Phil, and their son, he lets out a predictable sigh as the word, “efie” escapes his lips. They’re home.
When they’re out and about, Phil looks at Mwai, smiles and says, “efie time.”It’s time to go home. For Mwai and Phil, home is enough. They don’t need to have what the neighbors have. It’s humble, hospitable and exactly what they choose to make it—a loving space that inspires them to do great things in the world.
Each family member has their own special throw and when Mwai snuggles up in her chair, her son grabs hers and covers her up. That’s why, among many other things, you’ll find soft throws and cozy blankets in our shop.
At Efie, we believe home is a sanctuary. It’s the place our hearts are most comfortable. It waits for us with it’s reassuring familiarity. At the same time, we know that not every home is a sanctuary due to poverty and abuse, which is why we use ours to do great things.
One of the ways we do that is by supporting subsistence entrepreneurship in Mwai’s home country of Zambia. By purchasing their products to sell in our shop and donating 10% of profits to build community workshops, it’s our mission to help them meet their basic needs and shift from focusing on survival to business growth.
Most artists spend hours under the hot summer sun or bitter winter frost carving wood, weaving and painting their work while selling from the side of the road or open market stalls. With community workshops, they’re protected from the harsh elements and can work closer to their marketplace for easier selling and better protection.
Behind the Scenes of the Artists and Craftsmen who Pour Their Souls into Their Craft
Subsistence entrepreneurship refers to entrepreneurial actions taken by those living in poverty. These individuals started their craft for survival and emerged as some of the most remarkable artists and craftsmen in the world. They pour hours into their work in hopes that someone will find it valuable. Through sometimes harsh conditions and often traveling hours to high-traffic roads and market stalls in hopes of a sale, they show up day in and day out to create so they can eat.