Tuesday, June 30, 2009

{sseko US headquaters}

a couple of days ago i sat down for an introductory meeting with a potential accountant. among other typical business related questions he asked, "where is your office located?"

i promptly replied, "the west side of the dining room."

he proceeded to ask, "and your distribution center?"

Easy. "The dining room closet."

Here is a peak into what we affectionately refer to as HQ.

come by and visit! and please, don't be deterred by the high-security cornea scan at the front door. when you pay $475 a month for rent, you have to protect your assets.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

{Houston, we have arrival}

The very first Sseko Summer Intern has landed.

She just sent me an email.

It had a lot of exclamation marks, and self proclaimed dramatics. But it was all happy :)

She has already had a chance to hang out with the Sseko girls.

I am unbelievably excited, with a hint of jealousy.

Will keep you updated on her adventure!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

{confucius et al.}

i am pretty miffed.

i heard a saying today that has got me a little riled up:

"give a man a fish and he eats for a day. teach him how to fish and he eats for a lifetime"

which is totally ripped off from something i always say which is:

"give a girl in a developing country a fish and she eats for a day. teach her how to make sandals, educate her and empower her so that one day, she owns a business of her own. now she has more self respect, respect from her community and an income. statistics show that she is likely to reinvest 90% of that income back into educating her family, meaning her children are more likely to be healthy, educated and empowered. there are over 600 million young women in developing countries. let's give them more than a fish."

get your own catchy proverbs, confucius.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

{ flora and fauna }

last night, i watched Planet Earth with my new husband. (one of our favorite past times)

to celebrate our new life together, we thought we would start back at the beginning of the BBC series.

it starts out at the poles, describing the lives of the animals barely surviving the harsh winter. turns out the mortality rate of baby polar bears is 50%. half of the little guys don't make it through the winter.

then it moves to the rain forest. there is a shot of this hilarious bird, doing this hilarious dance. then he runs around, picking up his living space, making it look nice and tidy.

while i was getting quite a kick out of this, the narrator said something that struck me deeply. he explained that it is because life in the rain forest is plentiful, that the bird has the luxury to dance and decorate. "Because there is enough..."

He then goes on to explain that although the rain forest only occupies a measly %2 of earth's total surface area, it claims %50 of the entire world's animals and plants.

that is astonishing to me.

really astonishing.

those numbers are strikingly similar to some other equally astonishing numbers:

According to World Institute for Development Economics Research, the richest 2% of the adults in the world own more than 50% of all household wealth in the world.

It is not that there is not enough.

World Poverty.

Intrinsically overwhelming.

A seemingly insurmountable issue.

What do you do when there is simply not enough to go around?

I have NO idea.

Luckily, we don't really have to figure that out because there is enough.

There is enough.

I just finished reading Mountains Beyond Mountains, a biography about Paul Farmer, a doctor who works in Haiti and is passionate about the poor.

He explains a Haitian proverb, the Haitian peasants' perspective on poverty and suffering:

"God gives but doesn't share." -- God gives in plenty, but it is the job of his people to divide it up.

There is enough.

What are you doing with your enough?