Wednesday, April 30, 2014

One Mama in Congo

This is a small shack in the heart of Goma.   It is where Mapendo's sister lives, with 7 of her children.    She is a widow, with 9 children, raising her children on her own, with extremely limited resources.  Mapendo has taken in 2 of the girls (Neema and Ziada), and the other 7 remain here.

This is the shack, that 2 nights ago, thieves invaded.  Breaking down the door.  Threatening guns and taking everything.  The mattresses, the clothes, the pots and pans. Mapendo's sister provides for her family by selling beans in the market, and had recently borrowed money to buy beans and other items to sell. The thieves took all of those supplies, leaving only the debt behind.   

Eventually the neighbors heard the family's cries for help, and started raising a commotion, scaring the thieves away, before they could harm any of the kids. We are very thankful for that.

Here is the family (Mapendo's sister is on the left, all the others are her children).  Here they are in their stoic poses, as is traditional for photos in Congo.

And here they are, the older ones breaking into laughter, and even Mapendo's sister biting her lip to keep from laughing.

These photos were taken today.  2 days after being threatened with guns and losing virtually all that they had.

This is Congo.  Where a family this poor can still be robbed.  Where the next day you wake up, and go on.  Stoic faces, and laughter interspersed.

Let's do this for Mapendo's sister, and all of her children.  For every single item we sell today, SHONA will donate 25% of the sales price of that item to Mapendo's sister.  Buy a $20 bag and you are putting $5 directly into Mapendo's sister's hands.  Keep in mind that the SHONA Congo ladies are paid for every item they sew, when they sew it, so you are supporting 2 amazing causes: the dignity of an incredible group of artisans, and the emergency situation of one mama with a home full of children.

Shop by the end of the day on Thursday, May 1st and we will donate 25% of your order's total value to mapendo's sister. Can you think of a better gift for Mother's Day?