In the summer of 2011, four Air Force officers deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. During their stay there, they discovered beautiful hand-crafted artisan scarfs produced by a group of local women. Over time, it was brought to light that all of these women had tragically lost their husbands to the Taliban and now had the responsibility of providing for their families – most of which was through the sales of their handmade crafts. This fact brought a realization to the four Air Force Officers that a vehicle of empowerment for the local population did not exist. Thus, Flying Scarfs was officially founded, and with it, a business means through which the local Afghani widows could continue to find financial stability.
Today, Flying Scarfs seeks to reshape the manner in which many Americans think about social change. Through a lens of free market capitalism and micro-economic development, Flying Scarfs is an enterprise dedicated to the empowerment of the artisans not just in Afghanistan but also around the world. What was once just a small goal of providing employment for the Afghan widows after Americans had withdrawn from Afghanistan has now turned into a worldwide mission to find and aid other individuals in similar situations.
Flying Scarfs is a not-for-profit team of military officers and volunteers that seek to be an engine of change by building the necessary bridges so that underdeveloped countries may one day flourish in a global economy. Our goal is to promote microeconomic development around the world in order to provide comprehensive networks of stability with a concentration in providing opportunities for women to succeed.
In short, this means we buy from the “small guys” through localized economies while promoting peace, both at home and abroad. We intend to ultimately make a change by providing a "hand up" rather than a "handout."