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One Easy Way to Make a Difference

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Seeds of Blessing...Making a Difference

I tend to think big, which can get me in trouble.  I can come up with huge, fabulous ideas for projects all day long. But putting them into action? I get overwhelmed and often, never take the first step. I’ve run into the same thing when I’ve tried to figure out how to make a difference in this world. I look around and am overwhelmed by the needs. Unbearable poverty, hunger, lack of clean water, natural disasters, child labor, sex trafficking, homelessness. The list just keeps going and going and going.

What can one person do to make a difference?

Often, I haven’t gotten past overwhelmed. I’ve cried over the heartbreaking photos, sent checks, but ultimately, gone back to my regular life, pretty sure any effort on my part wouldn’t amount to more than spitting in a pond.

I’m not okay with that.

I’d love to be on Secret Millionaire and give away huge chunks of money and change people’s lives in big ways! But I don’t have millions at my disposal.

I decided there had to be a way I can do something, even from my little town; something that will make an impact.

I realized, instead of thinking big, I needed to think smaller.

(I did the same thinking shift when it comes to the holidays and it’s been great. In case you missed it, click to read Two Lies That Wreck our Holidays.)

I’ve realized real change can happen when lots of regular folks like you and me band together and do small things, but with the same goal.

Where to Start?

Recently, my sister-in-law gave me a basket. I LOVE handmade baskets. It was made in Ghana and…wow.

Seeds of Blessing...Ghana tote

Seeds of Blessing…Ghana tote

You know I’m all about helping women reach their dreams, so it broke my heart to realize that for many African & Asian women, their seemingly simple dreams are sometimes near-impossible to achieve.

They want to feed and educate their children, so they can have a better life.

For that dream, some have resorted to joining the sex trade. I’ve had times when money was seriously tight, but that’s never been a choice I had to make. Yet many women face these heartbreaking realities.

So I’ve found a way to make a tangible difference and I’m really excited about it. I’ve joined Seeds of Blessing, which (together with its parent non-profit, The Blessing Basket Project) is changing lives.

Seeds of Blessing...Making a Difference

Seeds of Blessing…Making a Difference!

They purchase baskets, totes and other handmade products directly from artisans in Ghana, Bangladesh, Uganda, Madagascar, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. They skip the middleman and pay the artisans what they call Prosperity Wages™ which are anywhere from 2 ½ times to 6 times Fair Trade Wages in the area.

Prosperity Wages give the artisans options they’d never have otherwise. They can educate their children and start other microbusinesses that break the cycle of poverty. It is making a huge difference in entire villages and communities. (Click to read more about The Blessing Basket Project.)

The goal is simple: “There is no hidden agenda. We simply work to end poverty in the lives of those we serve. “

They work with Whole Foods, but they need more outlets to sell the baskets. Which is where people like me—and hopefully you—come in.

I am thrilled to be a sales consultant for Seeds of Blessing. I love, love, the idea of selling unique, handmade products that make a tangible difference, especially in the lives of women.

Seeds of Blessing...Bangladesh Bowl

Seeds of Blessing…Bangladesh Bowl

If you have a minute, would you check out my new Seeds of Blessing website at www.connie.seedsofblessing.com to see some of the wonderful products available? Every purchase makes a difference.

Orders placed by noon on Dec 16th are guaranteed in time for Christmas.

Also, if you’d like to host a show in your home, workplace, church, book club, etc., please let me know. It’s a great opportunity.

I’m super excited about this small way I can make a difference. Do you have a project you’re involved in? I’d love to hear about it.

 

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    The Conversation

  1. Marti Pieper says:

    I love this, Connie. My mom is a Longaberger collector and has passed on many beautiful baskets to me. But when I think of the expense of those versus the lives and needs of these women–wow. Like you, I’m moved.

    My missions support has been more in terms of going and telling (or sending others to do so) than buying (although I do buy when I’m in-country, and try to do so from the artisans themselves when possible), but this sounds like a great project. I hope you can bring some baskets to show us at critique group one day. Thanks for sharing!

    • Connie Mann says:

      Hi Marti, I’ve always loved Longaberger baskets, too. And I love the way you’ve supported missions over the years. Thanks for sharing that–and my excitement about the way Seeds of Blessing baskets are changing people’s lives. I will definitely bring some to show the critique group!

  2. Jan Jackson says:

    Connie, love idea of making a difference in people’s lives and the baskets are beautiful. I’ve been sharing the info. But, I have to say, you make a difference just by being you. I appreciate all the thoughtful and generous things you do for me and for others. Merry Christmas, my friend.

    • Connie Mann says:

      Oh Jan, you sweetie. Thank you. And thank you so much for sharing the Seeds of Blessing basket info. I appreciate that-and you-so much. Merry Christmas, to you and your family!