One thing that my heart has always beat for is to care for the orphan. In 2012, weeks after I graduated from college, I found myself living at Esther's House, an orphan home in Malawi Africa, loving and caring for children that both lived at the home and that were enrolled in their community program. I also found myself beginning a sewing program for some of the older children to learn a life skill that would be able to provide an income in their future.
During my time there I found myself overwhelmed with the needs of others, but these children who became like family taught me the importance to do for one what I wanted to do for many.
Once my time ended there and I was back in the States, I found myself sitting at a table with David & Catherine Wilson who were months away from leaving their life here behind and moving their family to Esther's House. During the past 5 years, they have cared for the orphan through adoption into their own family and by overseeing Esther's House and it has been such a joy to follow along.
However, their time at Esther's House has ended, and in January 2018, they moved their family to Lilongwe, Malawi's capital to start a new organization, Ufulu Groups. Their purpose is to empower vulnerable and under-resourced single parents through skills training and dignified work, resulting in family reunification and family preservation.
The moment I heard about the new organization they were going to be starting, I knew I wanted to jump on board and support them in any way I could. According to UNICEF, approximately 4 in 5 orphans have at least one living parent, but that parent cannot care for their child's basic needs. Meaning the central reason these children with living parents are being orphaned is poverty.
I want that to sink in for a moment.
As a mama, I can't imagine being at the point of having to choose whether to give up my rights as a parent or meeting my child's basic needs. The Wilson's have seen this issue first-hand and want to combat the orphan crisis before it begins by providing parents who are at risk of having to face that decision and empower them through Ufulu Groups to learn skills, such as sewing, to provide a living wage that can support and keep their families unified.
So in order to support them and those sweet mamas who want to be able to love and care for their children in the best possible way, I am giving back a percentage of each and every purchase directly to them. These are people I personally know and trust, this is a cause I whole-heartedly love and support, so I hope that each time you open an Eden & Emeralds Pouch to tuck away your baby's things you can remember that as you love and care for your babies you have supported a mama on the other side of the world to do the same.