Building A New Life Through Soap—Meet Gozê

A portrait of Goze

This is Gozê.

Perceptive and quiet, when she laughs it is a sweet sound. She is a Yazidi woman from Sinjar, a mother, wife, and an ISIS-survivor. But she doesn’t want to be known for what  others did to her, she wants to be known for what she is doing for herself. 

With your help, Gozê has started a soapmaking business. 

Soapmaking in this part of the world goes back several millennia, but it is brand new to Gozê, a rural homemaker who had no prior business experience.

Gozê pours freshly made soap into a mold.

And the work isn’t easy, it requires precision! Measurements and temperatures have to be accurate. The soap is brewed, poured into a mold, cured, removed, cut, and stamped. Gozê’s family lives in a shipping container and doesn’t have much furniture, so they have to get creative about finding places to store and process the soap.

We were with Gozê when she cut her most recent bars. When asked if she likes making soap; she beamed a smile and gave a quiet “Yes.”

Gozê is in full production mode right now, intent on providing for her family. She’s nine months pregnant with her eighth child and knows she won’t be able to make soap when the baby comes!

For Gozê and her growing family, your empowerment donations have changed everything. It keeps children in school, it offers dignity instead of dependence, and it pulls whole communities up from poverty and depression. 

Firm soap is sliced, ready to fully cure.

You’re remaking their world, thank you!

UPDATE (April 2016): Since we first shared Gozê’s story, she and her sisters have made thousands of bars of soap. Now, we’re excited to share them with you! Every bar of Sisterhood Soap is hand-milled by refugees in Iraq from 100% pure ingredients. Help us empower more soapmakers like Gozê, as they reclaim their lives from ISIS!