Yesterday Jeannie Johnson of the Creative Women of the World shop (http://creativewomenoftheworld.com/) and I conducted a free workshop on Fair Trade and ways to volunteer to help others, especially poor people around the world.
The workshop, attended by 20 homeschooled teens at Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne Indiana, was a monthly meeting organized by librarian extraordinaire Cathy Lambert of the YA Department at the library.
This is my fourth annual workshop for Cathy focusing on books (See June 2010-2012 Allen County Public Library posts for photos of our Greek god costume contest and Indonesia cooking session and learning what it’s like to be an author).
This year I talked about my book Celebrities Giving Back (Mitchell Lane Publishing) and ways famous people like Tony Hawke have established foundations to help people. I also mentioned my book Recipe and Craft Guide to Indonesia as it includes craft items that could be made for sale at fundraisers.
I showed the students two crocheted caps made by a charity I support called http://www.stitchesofhope1.blogspot.com.
We make and distribute free handmade caps to people who lose hair from cancer and other illnesses. So far, we’ve given away 5,000 caps to places around the US, including Alaska! Several students mentioned places they had volunteered and I encouraged them to do more volunteering this summer or when they have opportunities.
Jeannie brought an assortment of items from Creative Women of the World, a shop she and other concerned individuals from Fort Wayne have recently opened in downtown Fort Wayne. It is a beautiful shop worthy a trip!
The items for sale have all been made by impoverished people from around the world—Tajikistan, Uganda, Haiti, Nepal are just a few of the countries represented with handmade items including jewelry, home décor and coffee and chocolate.
What was really fascinating was what the non-edible items are made from – Coke bottle caps, abandoned tires, gum wrappers, pop can tabs, even cassette tape film!
The kids could not always figure out what natural resources /recycled products were used, but they loved everything!
Prices are reasonable at the store. I had shopped there for Christmas and my recipients were thrilled with the jewelry items!
I hope you will consider volunteering to help someone today and/or joining a group that helps people. It’s fun to work together to help people earn their way out of poverty. What do you do to volunteer to help people around you and around the world?