I know a lot of my blog has been about us living in Korea and all the fun times we've had so far, but I am still very much involved in Noonday and am even more convinced that what I am doing, by representing these women, and what you are doing, by purchasing things they've made is making a global impact. But how can buying and wearing stunning jewelry really have that much of an impact?
Do you wear TOMS shoes? Have you ever purchased a pair? Their big mission is "1 for 1", or for every shoe purchased, they will give a pair of shoes to someone around the world in need. While I love this mission, I had a hard time with it myself for a few reasons: the shoes that we purchase (for a lot of money, in my opinion) seemed flimsy and poorly made. And two, if I want to help someone in need, I can just donate that money directly to them. I now have two pairs of TOMS, and neither one have wore out and neither pair are uncomfortable OR flimsy. And the best part is, if you have an issue with the price point (which I did), if you buy them on sale (hint hint), they will still give a pair to someone in need. And can you guess how many times I have given money (or a pair of shoes) directly to someone around the world in need? (crickets) Not asking you to judge me. I can't help but have feelings of doubt that any money invested is actually going to the people who truly need it. The final thing about TOMS that continues to bother me, is while they are clearly having an impact and providing shoes for people who need them, eventually, those people's shoes will wear out, or they will grow out of them, whether it is in a few months or a few years. But it will happen, and that is the end of their reach. So while TOMS is a great and powerful charity, charity does run out. However, I am glad to say that TOMS is now expanding their company and have an amazing business called "TOMS Marketplace", which sells items from different companies whose items are made by the very same people who would qualify for a pair of free shoes from TOMS, only those people can now afford their own shoes, because people like you are buying the things they make and giving them an income.
This is why I am so in love with Noonday, and have felt even more compelled since moving across the world, so close to impoverished nations, to really get the mission out there. We may never know the impact by the numbers, and it may be hard to tell how wearing a necklace allowed the craftsman to send his/her daughter to school, but it's there. The business is real. Charity runs out so quickly, but giving someone a way to earn an honorable income is groundbreaking.
How does this work, you may be wondering.
Well it's quite simple. Noonday finds artisan groups, which can either be a group of people who are already established with a skill, or a person or two without any skills, but the desire to learn. The materials they use are often found in nature, or recycled. Noonday then works with them and gives them vision and design and the skills they need. The only missing link is the consumer, you and me, to purchase those items. And yes, the price for those bargain shoppers is probably not ideal. But when you think and truly examine where not only the people and resources came from, but also who it is benefiting, the impact is clear. Noonday is out to change the world, one stunning piece of jewelry at a time. Every time you purchase an item, and then wear that item, you are telling the story of the person who made the piece. The story reaches to the far corners of the Earth, and impacts areas of poverty you and I are scared to even think about. But you can do something, and it is so easy. I recently participated in a conference that asked the question, "what would you do if you realized that the resources you have at your disposal were unreachable to those around the world? Would you share those resources?" Yes, we are given much. And to those who are given much, much is to be expected. I'm not asking you to sell your houses and live in the slums of India. The thought shakes me to my very core. But I am telling you that you and I can do something about those slums. We can change them. This is not through charity, but through business, which is sustainable and reliable. The jewelry you purchase through Noonday (and companies like it) give it's artisans wages that make them able to support their families, and thus propel them miles apart from the poverty and violence that threatens their well being. Are you willing and ready to join the movement?
Do you purchase jewelry? What would it look like if you purchased jewelry that was not only fashionable and attractive, but also helped lift others out of poverty...?
That is why I am a Noonday Collection Ambassador. I can't explain the many ways it has changed the way I look at the world, and the world of consumerism and fashion. (and those of you who know me, know I love fashion, shopping, and generally speaking, being a consumer)
Please, if any of this piques your interested and you are further inclined or intrigued, visit my website at http://daniellebrummer.noondaycollection.com/ -- there are so many ways to get involved! You can host a show, and earn rewards towards free jewelry; you can become an Ambassador yourself and advocate for these men and women who are struggling to challenge their culture's norm; or you can simply, and very effectively, purchase the items they have slaved over, and wear them proudly.
I'd love to answer any questions! Do not hesitate to ask-I am ready for the challenge! In the meantime...take a look at some of the pieces our inspiring artisans have hand-crafted, just for you...