Member Spotlight - Thistle Farms - Celebrating 25 Years!

What's the best thing about doing business in Middle Tennessee?

Without a doubt the best thing about having the Thistle Farms store and Café in Nashville are our customers. We love our regulars and they are a part of our community here just like employees, volunteers, residents, etc. It is exciting when we get guests from out of town making us truly feel like a destination in Nashville for tourists. In addition, all of the stories about how people discovered Thistle Farms encourage us to keep working hard to serve alongside women survivors.

Who is Thistle Farms and what should we know about you?

Thistle Farms is a nonprofit social enterprise dedicated to helping women recover and heal from trafficking, prostitution, and addiction. We do this by providing safe housing, meaningful employment, and a lifelong sisterhood of support. We are 25 years strong, make amazing body and home products, and have one of the best café's in town. We are the place to find gifts for those you love and beautiful items, ethically sourced for yourself. You can purchase and donate online as well is in our store.

What is unique about your business that makes you stand out?

Thistle Farms is unique in so many ways. Our mission to serve women through employment is a unique model that directly impacts revenue streams and peoples' lives. In addition, we are an organization that was started in Nashville, TN but we have a network of other organizations modeled after us and some global partners that we work worth through small business development. We are the largest social enterprise with a residential component. Finally, the most unique thing about us and our business is our employees. Every woman survivor has her own unique story of courage and strength!

What best business practices did you learn in 2020 and what did you do to be creative?

We quickly leaned into the importance of community and continued to be as present with each other as we could, even if it was via Zoom online. We added hand sanitizer to the products that we make and engaged in a letter-writing campaign to our donors and shoppers. We wrote 10,000 cards! One of the coolest things about our card writing was that we heard back from so many people about how meaningful and effective it was.

How do you stay involved in the community?

We open our doors at Thistle Farms every day to the people in our community. We get to know them and we always greet them with great hospitality. Also, we utilize our education space for events with other community partners. We attend as many community events as we can and we certainly attend as many chamber events as we can. We want to welcome people in and we want to be out in the world spreading the good news that Love Heals!

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