WFWM-Tree-Collage-FinalThe World Moms are making a difference in the world, and we get excited to see our friends and readers run with something we’ve advocated for. Today we are featuring a guest post from a friend of the blog, Shilpa, owner of the online global home and fashion retailer, Harabu House

“Equal pay for women”, “Healthy Children”, “A Good Sleep”, “A Good Education”, “Safe and Healthy Pregnancies” are just some of the wishes expressed for world moms at a casual event hosted by Jennifer Burden, founder of World Moms Blog. Jennifer had organized this event to highlight her trip to Uganda with the UN Foundation’s Shot@Life program, while telling a group of about 30 women about the women behind World Moms Blog and their social good initiatives.

A mutual friend of ours had suggested that Jen and I would hit it off with our interest in all things global, and we sure did! I was thrilled when I received an invitation to her event as I wanted to know more about her trip to Uganda.

We enjoyed wine, cheese and chocolate at Jen’s house and shared our own wishes for world mothers on a tree created from cardboard on her wall. Then, she called us into her family room in the middle of the party for a presentation.  With her laptop connected to her T.V., she took us on a journey to Uganda through pictures.

Jennifer had an opportunity to accompany the UN Foundation’s Shot@Life team to Kampala and the outskirts of Uganda in the Fall of 2012.  The purpose of her trip was simple – to observe UNICEF’s administration of vaccinations to young children.

Something as important as an oral vaccine to eradicate polio can be seen as an uphill battle in many of these communities, primarily because of the lack of information available and access.

This was Jennifer’s first time in Uganda and her pictures of the trip highlighted just how much basic infrastructures were lacking in so many places she had visited. Things that we take for granted like clean drinking water, good sanitation, and educating children were luxuries there.

Mumbende Vaccination

A school that Jennifer visited didn’t have printed text books for the students. As a result, the older children were encouraged to write story books for the younger children to read. Similarly, older girls at the school learned to sew so they could use their newly attained skills to create their own sanitary pads.  These girls would sell their pads to others in the community to provide a small income for themselves.

Wish for World Mothers Party 2 Collage

After the presentation, many of us asked questions and the vibe of the party was curious.  The conversations lasted a half an hour, about as long as the actual presentation had.  Afterwards, Jen raffled off a bunch of prizes, including a Shot@Life water bottle, a World Moms Blog mug and a FashionABLE scarf.

As a buyer for my store, the FashionABLE scarf from ONE and it’s story immediately caught my attention.  The purpose of FashionABLE is to offer jobs to women who could turn their lives from prostitution.  The women designed and made their own gorgeous 100% cotton scarves with a personal handwritten message.  I didn’t win the scarf that night, but I was hooked!

Just one of many gorgeous FashionABLE scarves that help empower women and give them new opportunities in Ethiopia.

Just one of many gorgeous FashionABLE scarves that help empower women and provide them opportunities in Ethiopia.

Through my research and travels for acquiring unique global products for my store, I’ve come across this model of creating sustainable jobs on a larger scale. Harabu House carries several products that “Give Back”, ranging from eco-friendly jewelry from Uganda, to woven raffia totes and clutches from Madagascar.

And now, we are carrying scarves from FashionABLE’s 2013 line, thanks to World Moms Blog!

Ever since meeting Jennifer and thinking about her inspiring trip to Uganda, I’ve been  expanding our “Products that Give Back” category, including also goods from Basik855, which gives back to communities of artisans and weavers in Cambodia in the form of drinking water.  It was a lot of fun to have a night out thinking about how we can make a difference in the world for mothers and children, and I was thrilled to discover a way to apply our overall wish to help mothers around the world almost immediately to my business.

Have you learned about ways you can make a difference for mothers and children in other parts of the world?  Have you ever purchased “products that give back”?  Tell us about it!

This is an original guest post by Shilpa of New Jersey, USA, the owner and founder of Harabu House, a global online boutique which strives to find sustainable products which provide economic, social and environmental benefits to the artisans that create them. Shilpa is also a  friend of World Moms Blog.  

This post is not sponsored by Harabu House. 

Photo credits to Jen Burden and to FashionABLE.

World Moms Blog

World Moms Blog is an award winning website which writes from over 30 countries on the topics of motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. Over 70 international contributors share their stories from around the globe, bonded by the common thread of motherhood and wanting a better world for their children. World Moms Blog was listed by Forbes Woman as one of the "Best 100 Websites for Women 2012 & 2013" and also called a "must read" by the NY Times Motherlode in 2013. Our Senior Editor in India, Purnima Ramakrishnan, was awarded the BlogHer International Activist Award in 2013.

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