The life of a mother is never ending. It can feel like you carry the weight of the entire world on our shoulders. Parenting is tough! As a mother, I know how tiring it can be. As a teacher, I hear the stories often of the real struggles you face. I know how we find ourselves believing that we aren’t doing it right! Nearly everyone of us would say we love our kids unconditionally, but we find that this is the hardest job we truly have in life. Today’s world, as it was many years ago, is a struggle. We face battles daily in our homes, workplace, and schools. It certainly isn’t limited to those locations though. Are we meeting their needs? What more can I do?
Imagine the life of Chena Giles, who travels down the hill from her home to collect soapstone from the river, and carve it into beautiful pieces, all while her two children are at school. Isn’t this what we do? When I hear her story I know without a doubt that she is not a failure! “Am I doing enough?” I am sure she may ask herself that very question! That question that we all ask ourselves from time to time. Guess what? We are! Just as Chena Giles works to provide for her family from the resources she is given, she helps to give back to them, and they are learning from her firsthand what it means to preserve. More importantly, what it means to be a mom!
Maybe your finances or marriage are a mess. Maybe you have lost that drive and motivation to just make it from day to day. I know I have been in your shoes more often than I would like to have been. We live paycheck to paycheck. We are down to one car and one income. We have real struggles with our children and family. Trust me when I say I have experienced great hardships in my own life; however, I don’t let them define me just as those living in Haiti. Recovering from the devastation’s of this world takes time. It takes time, energy, and resources for a community or country to put the pieces back together. On January 12, 2010, an earthquake measuring a catastrophic 7.0 on the Richter scale, hit this impoverished nation. The already weak infrastructure of this country was more or less obliterated. Aid came in droves, but very little of it reached the actual citizens. More than 160,000 were killed and close to 1.5 million people were displaced.
Imagine this happening to you? I can only imagine being a mother in an area like this that faced such destruction. I imagine that waking up day to day to the rubble surrounding you and thinking how am I going to provide? Where are the jobs? What am I going to do? Where is that silver lining amidst the pain?
Despite the utter destruction that took place 6 years ago in Haiti, the citizens did not let that mark their fate or identity. No! The people of Haiti came together, and in recent years there has been a movement to continue to help these people through a unique way…gifts that give back! They have embarked on a Trade-Not-Aid mission!
Yvette, employs and manages a number of artisans, and from that job she supports her own child, nieces, and nephews through the orders she gets from Macy’s. Is she a failure? I think not! Did she suffer? Absolutely! Does ti define her? Did she choose to sit in that grief and do nothing? The answer is a resounding NO!
As we approach Mother’s Day, I want to challenge you to buy gifts that actually give back. Gifts that mothers like Chena Gile create from their talents. As many of you probably are aware of, there are many companies that are now giving a portion of their sales of an item back to areas in our world that need them. Whether it is a pair of shoes or clean drinking water, there is a movement in our world today that screams “We want to do more!” As you decide what to invest your money on or in this year, make your first stop at Macy’s for gift giving ideas. Macy’s sells unique hand made home décor items from artisans in Haiti.
Macy’s Heart of Haiti has been in support of the Haitian artisans ever since the devastating earthquake hit this economically fragile nation over five years ago. The Macy’s Heart of Haiti line is NOT a charity. Charity is when you give people money or donate goods. With Macy’s Heart of Haiti, people are employed and can make a livelihood, doing what they love most. It’s a sustainable trade-not-aid program where artisans make 50% of the wholesale price of every item sold.
Shortly after the earthquake, Macy’s began carrying this product line featuring an array of beautiful handmade goods crafted by artisans in Haiti. The country of Haiti, rich in the arts, has skilled artisans that make products that are unique and stand out. Haiti has an estimated 400,000 artisans (out of a 10M population) who rely solely on their handcrafted goods as a source of income. No other sector of employment even approaches such numbers. While other organizations have come and gone, Macy’s has remained in Haiti since shortly after the earthquake, deepening their commitment to this Trade not Aid initiative.
Presently the Macy’s Heart of Haiti line is only available at a few select Macy’s stores listed here: Herald Square, Brooklyn Downtown, Metro Center, State Street, Northland Center, Seattle Downtown, Portland Downtown, San Francisco Union Square, Biltmore Fashion Park, South Coast Plaza Home, Mission Valley Home, Dallas Galleria, Lenox Square Mall, Dadeland.
I choose to buy my mother a gift from the Heart to Haiti line. This beautiful large papier mache vase with cord will look great on my mother’s dinner table. I also love that it can certainly be a conversation starter as well!
Macy’s has a large collection of these gifts that give hope.
When thinking of unique gifts to give your mom, make your first stop here.
Disclaimer: I was provided with a Heart for Haiti item to facilitate this post. The opinions presented here are 100% mine and was not influenced by the promoters.