October Box

It’s our anniversary! One year ago this month we sent out our first boxes. In that year, some pretty amazing things have happened, all thanks to your support!  We have had the privilege of commissioning countless refugees and survivors of human trafficking to make the handmade items that fill your boxes, watching these men and women support their families through difficult circumstances, and partnering with incredible organizations that are working to empower others. This wouldn’t have happened without you!

 

 

 

This month’s box features a beautiful scarf from Forai, and brand created by a group of refugees from Burma who have been resettled in St. Louis.  Their scarves are made from fair trade fabric that has been hand printed by impoverished women in India.  The second item is a pair of earrings from Starfish Project, an organization that employs women who have been rescued out of human trafficking. Starfish Project also promotes restoration by providing these women and their children with job training, health care, counseling, and education grants.

After receiving wonderful responses to some of our featured artists over the past year, we created a special set of greeting cards that will help you share these artists with your friends and family.  This greeting card set is included in this anniversary box, along with a download link to some special artwork made by Hong, who painted the cherry tree featured in our January box.  You can download this new piece to print in the size of your choice, or save it as your wallpaper. This is a small gift from us to say thank you!

We are so grateful that you have chosen to go on this journey with us. Thank you so much for your support over the past year, and for your continued support as we begin a new one!   

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September Box

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The “working women” figures in this month’s box were made by Safari, a refugee who began creating art while he lived in the Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya.  As a young boy, Safari watched his artist father create beautiful things with his hands using supplies like banana leaves and corn husks.  While in the refugee camp where he lived for 9 years, Safari came up with the idea to make these figures to sell to tourists so that he could pay for food.  Eventually, he was able to use his profits to help others in need and he began teaching others to create own their own items to sell for food and supplies.  His figures represent the hardworking people of Africa and a spirit of helping one another.  Even though his life has not been easy, Safari says, “I can do something to help people.”

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The second item in this box is an amazing necklace from SoloHope, an organization that helps women artisans in Honduras provide for their families despite desperate circumstances. The necklace is handmade from pine straw and thread, and its profits help artisans overcome extreme poverty in an empowering way. I seriously LOVE this necklace and have worn it almost everyday! Check out all their other great items at www.solohope.org

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This is Safari, working on his lovely creations!
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August Box

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The August box is one of my favorite boxes! We have an exciting item made by two of our local artisans – barefoot sandals! Just in time for that last beach trip this summer. These unique ‘sandals’ were made by  Maria and Yaisel, two women whose lives have been richly blessed by your support.

 

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Also featured are two items from partner organizations that are deeply invested in the restoration of refugees and trafficking survivors in the United States. The adorable canvas pouch is made by The Tote Project, which donates 20% of it’s profits to help survivors living in the US find hope and accomplish their dreams. All products from The Tote Project are made by women in India that have either left or been rescued from the sex trade.

 

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The last item in this month’s box is a granola bar from Providence Granola, a Rhode Island based granola company that employs refugees from across the globe. All the profits from Providence Granola Project are used to fund the organizations job training program which helps newly resettled refugees prepare to enter the workforce.

What a wonderful box, I hope you guys enjoy it as much as I do!

 

 

 

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July Box

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Two of the items in this month’s box are handmade from amazing organizations that support refugees and survivors of human trafficking.  The first is a candle from Prosperity Candle, an organization that helps provide living wages to female artisans in need and inspires women to thrive.

Every Prosperity candle is artfully handmade by a woman artisan earning a living wage and building a brighter future for herself and her family. Wax is carefully blended with the perfect amount of fragrance, then hand poured into vessels one by one. Each candle comes with the story of the woman who made it, from her hands to yours.

You can visit them and see all their wonderful items at www.prosperitycandle.com

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The second item is shea body butter from Fields of Hope, an organization that provides professional skills training, counseling, and mentoring for survivors of human trafficking in order to empower them with hope for a brighter future.

At Fields of Hope, female survivors of human trafficking (ages 15 and up) receive paid educational fellowships for up to one year.  Our job site is located in Charlotte, NC. This opportunity gives her the chance to receive valuable job skills training, spiritual mentorship, counseling, and accountability. The heart of the program is our survivor-inspired curriculum , Whispers of Hope, which provides her with challenging learning opportunities and leadership training. She also has the chance to receive hands-on job shadowing at partnering  local businesses. 

You can see their products and learn more about what they are doing here: www.fieldsofhopeusa.com

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You’ll also find in this month’s box a recipe and ingredients for dhal, a traditional Indian dish put together by a beautiful Indian woman named Shivani. Shivani learned to cook dhal, a dish of rice and lentils, when she was 8 years old and attending boarding school in India. It is a very common Indian dish with many different variations, but this particular recipe is one that Shivani has been making since she was a child. It was so fun watching her put all of this together, with it’s many spices and variety of lentils. I couldn’t wait to get home and make the recipe as soon as possible… and it came out amazing! It was very easy to do, but with such a wonderful flavor. It has become a staple in my house already!

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We hope you enjoy this month’s box, and we would love to hear from you! Share your images and thoughts on our social media pages!

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June Box

The jewelry set and rope basket in this month’s box were made by a group of refugees and trafficking survivors who meet once a month with Anchor of Hope. Each month, they learn a new skill, earn money that helps supplement their families’ incomes, and create beautiful handmade items that enrich the lives of others.  What has formed is a community of women who share a special bond — a sisterhood of both vulnerability and strength.

(photo by Whitney Keller)

 

(photo by Whitney Keller)

 

(photo by Whitney Keller)

 

(photo by Whitney Keller)

 

(photo by Whitney Keller)
That smile!

One of these women is Maria, a survivor from Mexico who is now a wife and mother. When asked about her experience with Anchor of Hope, her eyes filled with tears of gratitude. When she first began working with Anchor of Hope, it was her family’s only income. Now, her husband has found a job and works hard to provide for their family, but Maria has since had new concerns.  A few months ago, Maria’s mother, who still lives in Mexico, became very ill and was unable to pay for medical treatment.  Thanks to your support, Maria has been able to send the money she earned through Anchor of Hope to her mother, who has used it to pay for medicine.  Maria is happy to report that her mother’s health has improved significantly, and she is thankful for the opportunities you have provided for her by purchasing this box.

 

(photo by Whitney Keller)

(photo by Whitney Keller)

(photo by Whitney Keller)

 

(photo by Whitney Keller)
(Photos by Whitney Keller)

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