I just realized that I never shared about a very exciting venture that I have been helping my friend, Lisa, with. Some people call us the Leisas. Lisa and her family attend our church. I had very minimally acquainted with her previously, but we started chatting at a church softball game last summer. I knew she had just returned from the annual mission trip to Honduras, so I asked her how it was. She shared all of the wonderful things they did, but also about a heartbreaking experience.
The team typically stays in San Pedro Sula, where they work with the local church and La Patria School. This year, however, they added a trip to a more remote town called Yoro to install a water filtration system. While there, Lisa learned about how severely they were being affected by human trafficking. Young girls would go missing out of nowhere. If they returned, they likely had STDs or had become pregnant. She shared how deeply this affected her and how she felt like she needed to do something. She couldn't just forget what she saw. She wasn't sure where to start, but thought that selling t-shirts to raise some seed money. I casually mentioned that I owned a t-shirt press and the means to make custom shirts and our precious friendship was born. Later that night, I sent her my first set of sample fonts and styles. Both of us were so excited to see where this would go.
I made a few as a test run and a couple months later we sourced some responsibly made t-shirts. I was cutting out 100 "Not for sale." pieces in vinyl before I could even blink. Lisa came over for an afternoon and we knocked them out in about 5 hours with her weeding and my placing and pressing.
We made a handful in Spanish and may add those in future runs.
I also added an Instagram handle and hashtag to the back of my shirt, which was made in the first run.
We made the shirts at the end of September and have already raised enough money to run electricity to the school and a small home that will be used for some of the women to make food and crafts to sell and support themselves. I feel like there is going to be so much to come from this effort and I can't wait to be a part of it! If you would like to support us on social media, I have linked below. Shirts are $12 if you are interested in getting one!