Last year, a friend of mine began making purses called Umweo Bags. She sells these purses and 100% of the profit goes to providing food for malnourished children in Zambia, Africa. (Read her story here).
A different friend owns a boutique in New Orleans. Not too long ago, this store began to carry these Umweo Bags as a way to fulfill their larger vision of creating a better world for children to live in.
Umweo Bags sell for about $30 each. Recently, the store owner asked if they could have a 'one-of-a-kind' bag to sell for around $75. The logic here, as expressed by my friend, is that often times, when two women enter the boutique together, they will try to out buy or 'one up' one another. So, if one girl decides to purchase an Umweo Bag, her friend will be inclined to purchase the more expensive one-of-a-kind Umweo Bag in order to 'win'. Unfortunately, in this particular situation, the spending of more money to purchase a more expensive bag is not driven by the desire to feed more children, but is driven by a desire to be the winner.
It's an interesting place we live in, this land of America. I absolutely love the fact that I live in America, however I often wonder just how disconnected we really are from the rest of our brothers and sisters around this globe. To begin to truly understand and grasp the thought that today over 1 billion people do not have access to clean drinking water. And they won't tomorrow. Or the next day. To begin to grasp the fact that a child will die every 15 seconds today due to water related illnesses or for lack of food. (Stats)
There seems to be incredible irony that two women shopping today will try to outspend one another and due to their insecurity and selfish motives they will spend more money which in turn, will provide food for starving children.
But I do not wish to simply pass a flippant judgment against these women. Because I too am guilty of careless spending based off of my own insecurities and selfish desires. It's quite sobering and it makes me wonder, do I personally realize how dire the situation is on our planet? Am I personally allowing myself to be acquainted with the fact that brothers and sisters that I share this world with are in desperate need and that I can make their life and existence better by being transformed in my own heart to live a more selfless life?
How about you? What strides are you making towards becoming a more selfless person? What role are you playing in making this world a better place and better existence for the millions of people who are not currently experiencing 'better'? Perhaps, allowing ourselves to become acquainted with the reality of the situation would be a good starting point for many of us.
My friend is spending her free time making and selling Umweo Bags. Keep up the good work, friend!