Why Work Matters (a lot)
    By Jessica Honegger - Monday, October 03, 2011

    Imagine going to work, with no money in the bank at the beginning of the month and just scraping by until your next paycheck (this doesn’t sound too far off just yet to a lot of us!). Then, you show up the last Friday of the month and are told you will not get paid. Not now. Not ever. This is a common occurrence in the countries where Noonday Collection artisans live. Part of paying our artisans a living wage also means paying them up front, before we even see our product. This is because many of the artisans are still living hand to mouth, and need a daily paycheck.

    We met more of the Ugandan “family” today and all exclaimed, “Thank you for treating us so well.” Bukenya, who heard of God’s reconciling love through the ministry here, has a dream. “I want to open an orphanage some day.” How many 24 year old Americans dream of opening an orphanage? The number is zero because overcrowded, underfunded orphanages don’t exist in the US. I am not saying we don’t have crazy problems and that all children get care. But it isn’t so common that a young boy would dream of running one.

    How did you come to dream this, I asked? “I lived in an orphanage from age 10-16. I never knew my mom and my dad didn’t care for me. The orphanage became family. Before that, I was on the street. I made bricks for construction and got paid very little or some times not at all. We are expecting our first child [his wife Coral makes jewelry alongside him] and we have been able to get prenatal care for the baby and buy everything we need for him. Only because of this job we have for Noonday Collection. We get paid every day.”  Jalia and Daniel also helped them find a home and paid the first month’s rent, in exchange for storing some jewelry supplies there. Jalia said I would not have even recognized him from a few months ago (he is pictured below).

    As I looked into his eyes, I couldn’t help but think about the son I will meet in only three days.  What would his story have been? I also have been thinking about the power of work. God created work before the Fall and told Adam and Eve to create bounty from what He had given them. God’s own act of creation is even called work in Genesis “for on the 7th day, he rested from his work.” There is something so beautiful, restoring, and dignified about work. It often gets a bad rap! Yet, I look into the eyes of each of the men and women I meet, and see their satisfaction and pleasure in being able to create and earn an income.

    You can see this pride in the photos Wynne Elder has so graciously captured today. YOUR purchases make THEIR jobs possible. You bring restoration and dignity while making yourself the most stylish gal in town.

    {If you want to be a voice for these faces you see, host a trunk show! Or, consider becoming an ambassador. It is the opportunity to style your friends while changing the world. Contact info@noondaycollection.com for more info.}






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