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Photo by Liz Hammond

ABAN stands for “A Ban Against Neglect”, and since the birth of this non-profit in 2010 there has been significant progress towards ending both the environmental neglect and societal neglect faced by the most vulnerable populations in Ghana.

They achieve this 2-fold goal by empowering young mothers and recycling glass and plastic found on the streets. They teach the women tradition Batik techniques and basic sewing skills so that they can transform waste into useful products, and earn a living to support their families in the process.

The resulting bags, wallets, and laptop cases are gorgeous. I got the chance to try a ToteWallet, and Make-up bag and thought that the juxtaposition of traditional dying with modern colours and designs was perfect.

What's To Love?:

– Beautiful and Unique

– A truly inspiring social enterprise

– Helps mamas around the world

Overall Rating:

Health Rating:

ABAN’s goods do not currently use organic certified fabrics or water based dyes.

Design Rating:

These bags, wallets, and cases are beautifully crafted. From the recycled plastic liners, to the hand-batiked fabric, every aspect of ABAN products are unique and one-of -a-kind.  I love the attention to detail, right down to the recycled glass beads on the zipper pulls.

Social Rating:

ABAN isn’t just creating sustainable products; they are transforming communities. The proceeds from the sales help fund a program that empowers marginalized young mothers in Ghana. Helping women create ABAN products enriches their traditions and creates opportunity to make a new future all their own.

Carbon Rating:

Although ABAN products are shipped from Africa to your doorstep, which is quite a journey if you live in North America, you can be confident that they were assembled locally in Ghana with materials found discarded in the streets. This is still better than many of the products found in malls whose virgin materials and labour are sourced the globe over before making their way to retailers.

Waste Rating:

These products are literally made of waste. Each of the bags and wallets are lined with up cycled plastic water sachets collected from the streets of Accra. Perfect for hauling dewy vegetables from the market or safeguarding your travel wardrobe from your cosmetics.

Value Rating:

As far as hand-made products go these bags are an absolute steal! The entire line falls in the 7-50$ range. And when you consider that “ABAN breaks the cycle of poverty among young mothers in Ghana and empowers them to contribute to the restoration of themselves, their communities and their environment”, their products have a value that goes a lot deeper than money.


Green Mama Approved