Debra Sadranu first came to Fiji in the 1990s and established a Spa School and Senikai Spas, a chain of spas in luxury hotels and resorts. Debra’s passion is helping women in Fiji gain access to training and employment to improve their quality of life. Spa Academy Fiji, now a CIDESCO International accredited school, sponsors, trains, and provides students with workplace training. Many are single mothers, often from remote and rural areas, and have struggled to get training and secure employment in the past.
health & wellness
In 2014 Debra took her passion for skin care into designing skincare formulas, founding Essence Group Fiji, a health and wellness business centered around supporting local economic development goals.
Debra’s extensive knowledge of the benefits of sea minerals for the skin led her to explore the various types of local seaweed. Through her partnership with James Cook University in Australia, Debra learned that nama, a long time local Fijian delicacy, has incredibly beneficial properties for the skin due to its high concentration of minerals and vitamins.
She then embarked on a journey to figure out how best to sustainably harvest and incorporate nama into her skincare formulas. Being mission driven, Essence Group built the world’s first sustainable nama harvesting program alongside the Australian Government funded Market Development Facility*.
The sustainable nama harvesting program was designed to create opportunity for the women of the Yasawa islands. It generates a new income source to compliment that of the traditional village system and safeguard an important natural resource in a pristine environment.
*MDF is a multi-country initiative which promotes sustainable economic development through higher incomes for women and men in their partner countries.
Women harvesters spend up to 8 hours in the water, 3 days a week, hand picking the wild nama "sea grapes". Nama regenerates rapidly (within 3 weeks) and harvesting the nama does not negatively impact the ecosystem. The nama harvesting program allows the Fijian women to earn an income. The purchasing of Nama Fiji products helps to change their lives and the lives of those around them.
five star resorts & spas
Our skincare products have been sold in Luxury Five Star Hotels and Spas throughout Fiji for over 15 years. Due to demand, we’re bringing the Nama Fiji brand global. We launched in the U.S. in October 2019 and we are planning to launch in Australia and New Zealand by the end of 2019.
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