One thing I learned when reading Half the Sky
by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn
is that when a woman in a third world country
earns income, her status in the community grows
by leaps and bounds
and her family's economic position improves dramatically --
even more so than if her husband (if she has one)
earned the same amount of income.
That's because women are more likely to use resources
for their family unit, while men
are more likely to address their own needs
and desires first, putting the needs of
wives and children second.
That's why grass roots charities benefitting
women and girls' education and economic opportunities
are near and dear to my heart.
And if women are empowered through art,
that's even better.
So I was delighted to find
(a Portland, Oregon nonprofit)
represented at the Northwest Folklife Festival.
The folk art they produce is charming and naive
and quite reasonably priced.
The pieces -- wall hangings, paintings on board, little trays --
tell a story of village life, customs, and wildlife.
And each artist's story is told as well.
So if you're a lover of folk art
and you want to make a difference
in an artist's life,
please visit HERE and fill your shopping cart.
You can see the artists and
read their stories.
And if you've decided
you've already got too much stuff
in your life,
there's a way to make a donation
instead of a purchase.
Please take time to explore their site
and see how the project
is making a difference.