Today, it is with enthusiasm, joy, delight and determination that I announce I have been selected to lead the marketing, sales, communications and public relations efforts for New Hope Girls.
First things first, who are New Hope Girls? They are a small but mighty organization located in the Dominican Republic. They actively fight on the front lines against the exploitation of young girls and women. They do this with a safe house that provides a safe place for healing and identity restoration for girls who are rescued. They also fight with a workshop that provides skilled artisans with dignified employment – they sew stunning bags and purses. The third component of the fight is education! They work within the community to pour into the lives of high-risk girls because mentorship is critical for change. Through these three distinct, complementary, and mutually supportive functions of the business they are making lasting change in the lives of the women and girls who live in their home and community.
While the most important and critical change is happening in the Dominican Republic, it is also happening in the lives of women like me. When I became acquainted with the organization years ago – while I was leading and growing my own marketing agency – I felt beckoned. I hope you have had the joy of this feeling – a magnetic pull to something you know is so much bigger than you and yet you have the honor of an invitation. That first invitation led to conversations and a relationship with their leader, Joy Reyes. As I got to know Joy and others involved in the work of New Hope my love grew, as did my involvement. After a couple of years, and growing contributions, I traveled to New Hope with my dad.
The Honor to be their Voice
While in LaVega I met with the women and girls of the organization, learned their names, was trusted to hear their stories, and was forever impacted by their strength, light and joy. While there, I went running with the girls until the luna y estrellas came out for the night. We danced as we celebrated the Quincenera of one of the girls, and we laughed when the girls said my dad looked exactly like Ed Sheeran’s dad. I learned how to drive a motorbike from one of my new amiguitas and laughed hysterically at how bad I was! It was beautiful, relational, special and blessed.
While there, I was interviewing one of the women who is a leader within the workshop. When I asked her what I could do she simply said, “Be our voice.” I reflected on what she asked of me in that moment and I had no way to know a more formal invitation would follow. And when that invitation came, it was clear that the only answer was yes.
In my new role I will apply my business acumen, marketing experience, communications expertise, public speaking skills, and work ethic to lead forward the business success of the workshop. In this social entrepreneurship role I will take seriously the reality that when the business is successful it means more lives are positively impacted. The success of the product means more jobs for deserving artisans and more funding available to support the rescue and care of girls. This role and organization represent the very best of what business can do.
I returned to New Hope Girls one month ago and was reminded afresh of just how beautiful, powerful and transformative our organization is. We celebrated 10 years of rescue, redemption and identity restoration all proudly wearing shirts with our mantra, “Created for More.” Those words are our battle cry as we fight for her and will be my anthem as I accept this invitation to serve with New Hope Girls.
How can you help? Oh, I’m so glad you asked 😉
First, please go read about New Hope Girls! Spend time exploring the website, viewing products, watching their videos, and reading their story. It is such an honor when people spend time familiarizing themselves with who we are. That critical step is how our circle has grown and our ability to impact more lives has simultaneously grown.
Follow New Hope on social media; we are active on Instagram and Facebook. This is where you can get a glimpse into our world and reality on a regular basis. Comment, ask questions, like and share. We all know that these simple gestures help organizations like New Hope thrive forward in a digital age.
And hey, I have to say it – shop. There are so many styles and patterns! I love the pouch for a makeup bag or pen/marker bag. The tote holds everything but the kitchen sink (great shopping bag, beach bag, travel bag…). And recently, we launched a super cool backpack that my mom just bought for her disc golf adventures (you are so awesome, mom!). Oh, and the mini-hobo is perfectly sized for my little girl. There is something for everyone! Please consider how your purchase is literally funding job provision for vulnerable women and also contributing to the rescue of young girls.
If you are the praying type I specifically ask for prayers for the other leaders of the organization, and the women/girls. Please also pray over this transition for me and my family. Adam is supportive and with me in this – we made the decision together. However, it will still be an adjustment for us all and we want to navigate it well as a team. The organization is growing quickly and we humbly ask for prayers over wisdom and discernment over all the many important decisions we will be making together.
I’m sure you have many questions as you read through this update on my next career adventure. I’d love to hear them! Truly, talking about New Hope is one of my favorite things to do. If we are personally connected I invite a text message, phone call or email. If we’re digital-friends or acquaintances, I invite you to connect with me on LinkedIn or Instagram. I will go ahead and address one question that I am sure is on the minds of many…
Yes, this does mean I am leaving my current position within Higher Education to pursue this role as a social entrepreneur. This is hard in some ways. However, the challenges are eclipsed by the powerful reality of the opportunity at hand. I have the opportunity to contribute to the rescue, restoration, and redemption of these girls and women. I am saying yes to this invitation with confidence that I was led here with purpose and intention.
Let the Adventure Begin!
I am continuing to transition between my current workplace reality to New Hope and May 1, 2021 I will be “all in” with New Hope. I most certainly will share the adventure along the way and hope you feel invited in. Without question, I will be blogging, posting and sharing about all I learn and experience along the way.
Finally, remember that you too are Created for More. I hope that this announcement and life update causes you to pause, reflect, and think deeply about your own impact.