Seven Bar Foundation

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Seven Bar Foundation
The Seven Bar logo represents a "ladder", an exit strategy out of poverty for women.
OriginsSeven Bar
Area served
MethodCause marketing
Key people
  • Renata M. Black

The Seven Bar Foundation is a social enterprise that uses cause marketing initiatives and the luxury lingerie industry to consistently fuel microfinance and benefit underprivileged women around the world. It is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based out of New York, New York that raises funds for microfinance institutions (MFIs) to enable women to spearhead their own businesses and rise out of poverty.


The Seven Bar Foundation is a social enterprise, a non-profit that uses business models for social impact. The Foundation relies on commercial markets to fuel a consistent revenue stream instead of relying on unpredictable and limited donor funding. Seven Bar aligns cause with product, utilizing the European lingerie industry as a marketing platform to reach a critical mass of consciousness, empowering women by providing funding to start their own businesses.


Seven Bar is a third-generation family involved in general aviation, real estate development and investments established in New Mexico beginning in the 1950s. Seven Bar and the Black family established the Seven Bar Foundation in 2001 with activities in eight states, contributing to community development projects in each.[1]


Seven Bar Foundation is a business model for social impact. It is the brand for microfinance with its pink bars in the logo representing a "ladder" – an exit strategy out of poverty for women.[2] The ladder is to microfinance very much like what the pink ribbon is to breast cancer. The concept is based on the eighth step of Maimonides' Golden Ladder, "To prevent poverty by teaching a trade, setting up a person in business, or in some other way preventing the need of charity."[3]

Renata M. Black[edit]

Renata Mutis Black has established herself as a philanthropist and humanitarian through her commitment to eliminating poverty. She has fought poverty in twelve different countries, working with terminally disabled children in Hong Kong, mentally disabled elders in New Zealand, and victims of the 2004 tsunami in India.[4][5] The events of the 2004 tsunami centralized her vision towards microfinance.

Black and her husband narrowly evaded the destruction of the tsunami when their flight to Thailand was cancelled due to a mechanical failure.[6] After the disaster, Black immediately went to help rebuild the villages shattered by the catastrophic flooding. During this project, a woman from the region approached her and said, "I know you have money and I don't want it, but why don't you teach me how to make it myself?"[7] This encounter sparked a new course for Black, who immersed herself in study on microloans and its impact on impoverished communities with 2006 Nobel Prize winner, Muhammad Yunus. Black then applied her training by establishing a grassroots microfinance endeavor in India that exists to this day.[8]

Having witnessed first-hand the transformative force of microfinance through her program in India, Black redirected the mission of the Seven Bar Foundation to fund these institutions on a consistent and global basis.[9] She found that microfinance presents these women with the tools to create an exit strategy out of poverty and allows them to become self-sufficient down the road.[10]

I picked women as my vehicle for transformative change because, to put it simply, they are the root of a society from which all else grows. Children's education, the family environment, health care, population growth--these depend on women and the choices they make. I also feel that women, being nurturers, are more likely than males to spend their profits on their children's well-being. Therefore, when you invest in a woman, you help break the cycle of poverty for the next generation.

— Renata M. Black, featured in The Soul of Leadership by Deepak Chopra


Lingerie New York[edit]

Operating on the tagline "empowering women on a g-string rather than a shoestring,"[14] Lingerie New York was produced by fashion week regular Lynne O'Neill and showcased the latest collections of lingerie designers Atsuko Kudo and Carine Gilson. It was held in October 2010 at NYC's historic landmark Cipriani 42nd Street. Michelle Rodriguez DJed the event and supermodel Veronica Webb showcased a "space lace" corset made of injection-molded fiberglass, designed by Dara Young.[15] The event featured a performance by the Imaginaerial Entertainment Group, a cirque style aerial silk act in which eight aerialists constructed a human Y.[16] Also in attendance were host Sofia Vergara and media and fashion mogul Russell Simmons. Lingerie New York raised over $200,000 in the name of microfinance for women.[17]


Partners include Freedom Bay St Lucia, Royal Asscher, Hennessy Black, Fusion Beauty, and Nair.[18]

Lingerie Miami[edit]

Lingerie Miami took place in front of the Vizcaya Palace in Coral Gables, Florida on February 7, 2009, showcasing European lingerie designers Agent Provocateur, Fifi Chachnil, and Carine Gilson on the same stage for the first time.[19] The event was hosted by Eva Longoria, co-hosted by Veronica Webb, DJed by high fashion model Ève Salvail, and featured guest speaker Deepak Chopra.[20] Guests were treated to a three course meal, cocktails by Belvedere and champagne by Moet & Chandon.[21] Lingerie Miami featured a live and silent auction, including a private tour of the Desperate Housewives set in Los Angeles and a kiss with Eva Longoria that sold for $35,000.[22] The event raised over $180,000, funding microloans for 2,233 women, and garnered over 177 million media impressions.[23][24]


LipFusion Lip Gloss by Fusion Beauty[edit]

Seven Bar Foundation and Fusion Beauty's "Kiss Away Poverty" campaign launched on September 15, 2009 with Kim Kardashian.[25] For every $29 LipFusion lipgloss sold, $1 of the purchase went to Seven Bar.[26] Fusion Beauty created a limited edition 4-color LipFusion collection titled "Luxe Boudoir," which featured the Seven Bar logo on the packaging and the product itself, and retailed at all Sephora locations globally.[27][28] In three months, the cause marketing campaign sold 100,667 lip glosses, translating to $100,667 in funds for the Foundation.[29]

Stars of Africa Collection by Royal Asscher[edit]

Royal Asscher Diamond Company partnered with Seven Bar Foundation for Lingerie New York to present their "Stars of Africa Collection" designed by renowned jewelry designer Reena Ahluwalia.[30] The collection consists of rings, pendants, cufflinks and earrings "with diamonds encased in a fluid-filled sapphire dome, which allows them to fall freely, like snowflakes in a snow globe."[31] Prices range from $1,250-$2,250 for the "Shining Stars" line and $5,950-$8,300 for the "Super Stars" line. For each piece sold, 50% of the profits go to the Foundation's microfinance fund.[32]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]