Let me start by admitting the obvious: I'm not a mother. I have two start-ups and a lot of responsibilities, but no one has put me in charge of another human before.

Which is why I'm in awe of the mothers around me -- our CMO Thea, my best friend Angie, my own mother, Martine -- and the chops it takes to raise kids.  A few years ago, I started something called Samahope, the first crowdfunding site for international medical treatments, focused on procedures for women and children in need. We paid for birth injury surgeries for women who had lost their livelihoods because they couldn't afford to deliver their babies with proper medical care. We paid for cleft palate repair for kids.

Eventually we merged Samahope with CaringCrowd, Johnson & Johnson's platform for medical treatments, after we'd funded about 16,000 treatments.

Why am I telling you this? Because on Mother's Day, I always think about my time with our Samahope patients in places like rural Sierra Leone and Uganda, places where women still die in the course of giving birth and can't afford to meet their basic needs. Over the years, we saw that best way to help them is to give women good jobs that pay living wages so they can afford proper care. We can solve this problem at the root by giving work.

This is our mission at LAXMI: give work to women in need. By paying premium prices for our raw ingredients, and sourcing from areas of economic hardship, we make it easier for mothers to care for themselves and their families. Giving work is the root of ending poverty.

Mothers around the world, we salute you!



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