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Empowering Women: Sommaya’s Story

Mar 18, 2021

Sommaya Thing lives with her family in Nepal. When her husband became ill, it was up to Sommaya to care for her husband and five children. Despite her best efforts at farming, she had to take her children out of school due to lack of resources. It was at this time that she was introduced to doTERRA Wintergreen harvesting.

Of her experience, Sommaya says, “The Wintergreen distillation unit in the village is becoming a boon to our life. It has become a regular source of income for me, and as a result, I am able to provide for my family. The kids are now going to school on a regular basis. With the grant from the government for those affected by the earthquake and the regular income from Wintergreen collection, we are working on building a new two-room home. The Wintergreen leaves collection has become the foundation of my progress. Without it, I would have been devastated.”

Wintergreen grows in the foothills of the Himalaya, making Nepal and China the sole regions of the world with endemic, wild-harvested Wintergreen. Most Wintergreen harvesters are women who harvest the leaves during the early mornings before they start their daily household tasks. Often, the money from the sale of the leaves supplements essential household costs, such as sending children to school or buying food. To harvest Wintergreen, harvesters must travel through steep, muddy mountainsides, collecting leaves from the shrub. After the raw material is hand-collected, harvesters bring the leaves in large baskets carried on their backs to the distillation unit where the owner of the distillation unit will weigh the leaves, pay the harvester, and run the distillation.

To learn more about doTERRA’s Co-Impact Sourcing efforts in Nepal, visit:

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