I usually post about World Vision every year around Christmas. But being a new parent, World Vision’s mission is especially poignant this year as the first-ever Mother’s Day and Father’s Day for our family roll around.
Being a new parent has been an amazing experience. I’d heard people tell me that fatherhood would change my life but I of course wasn’t prepared for what that would actually mean. The day before my daughter was born, everything I did was for myself. The day after she was born, everything I do is for her.
It’s also changed the way I look at the world. It used to be when I heard about suffering children, I’d think of the child. But since my daughter was born, I think more about the parents of that child. Like me, they would–and often do–give all they have for their child. But when all they have isn’t enough, that is heartbreaking. When my own child cries out at night because she’s scared or hungry, it touches me and I rush to comfort her and feed her. But I take it for granted that there are mothers and fathers out there who live in areas where comfort and food just don’t come as easily.
World Vision’s tagline is “Building a better world for children” and they’ve done an amazing job at making that mission come true. They’re of course well known for their Sponsor a Child program where as a donor you don’t just write a check, but you can see first-hand how your money is helping a real child through letters, photos, packages, and even visits.
You can also donate to World Vision directly and have your gift go to any cause you select or wherever it’s most needed, whether it’s providing clean water to an impoverished community, saving girls from the horrific world of sexual exploitation and sex trafficking, providing medicine and medical care to the sick, providing clothing to the poor, and much more. Every dollar you give turns into $1.30 worth of impact; 60 cents on the dollar goes directly to local community programs, while the other 40 cents is used to generate and solicit 70 cents worth grants and donated goods.
While most of the “gifts” in the World Vision catalog and symbolic, they also feature actual handcrafted gifts that end up multiplying the value of your donation. You get an amazing, unique, useful gift that you can give to others (or enjoy yourself). A portion of the proceeds goes to an artisan in one of the impoverished areas that World Vision supports, helping them earn a working wage and help their local community out of the cycle of poverty. And the rest of the proceeds goes to help World Vision’s many causes. On top of this, the craftsman are provided with sustainable materials and recycled fabrics to use, which helps the environment as well. It’s a gift that gives four times.
Appropriate for Mother’s Day, I was able to try out this baby bib, handmade in Bali, Indonesia.
Usually when we hear of Bali we think of rich people going to their fancy vacataion spot in paradise. I had the opportunity to go there for a wedding a few years ago, and I was struck at what I saw. The tourists were all whisked to their gated resorts but on the way from the airport to the resorts you could see how poor the country is.
What’s great about organizations like World Vision is that they go straight to the places that need it most and work from the ground up in helping them–in this case helping artisans in Bali who create this bib by hand using traditional Balinese craftsmanship, sustainable materials and recycled fabrics.
The bib is amazingly sturdy, made from 100% cotton. Most of the cheap made-in-China bibs we’ve had end up falling apart after only a few uses and washings, or having the velcro closure snap off. I can tell with this one that it’ll last.
The material is thick and the size is much larger than traditional bibs, meaning that baby is well protected, something very timely as she’s just entering the phase where she’s flailing her arms and sending pureed food flying all over.
Here’s Maddie sporting the bib in a relatively subdued mode as she enjoys one of her favorite pastimes, chewing on anything random she can find.
The suggested donation for the bib is $40, and it’s $40 well spent.
Happy Mother’s Day, and don’t forget to help those children in the world who are less fortunate, and their mothers, women who would–and do–give their all to help their kids have happiness, health, and safety in their lives but could use help from those of us who have been blessed with abundance.