I recently had the pleasure of meeting someone who has probably never heard of Dignity Period but lives a life totally in sync with our mission.
HGTV personality and author of the book Of Mess and Moxie: Wrangling Delight out of this Wild and Glorious Life, Jen Hatmaker, made a stop near St. Louis, MO on her book tour. I’ve been following Jen online for a while and find her story to be not only interesting, but also inspirational. She’s one of the rare individuals with a large following who manages to be authentic in sharing both triumphs and troubles.
Jen and her husband adopted a son and daughter from Ethiopia, and she speaks openly about what that experience has been like for her family. Her son has a living mother in Ethiopia who made the unimaginable choice to give him up for adoption so that he could have a better life.
In our work, we see Ethiopian girls making difficult decisions every day. Having to choose between embarrassment and education, or sometimes between tradition and education, in the 21st century doesn’t even seem possible to most of our supporters. Fortunately, together we’re able to prevent the need for some of those tough choices.
In the same vein as Dignity Period’s origin story, during her travels, Jen saw first-hand how even small donations could have significant impacts for women in Ethiopia.
She now actively supports the Legacy Collective, a program that helps Ethiopian women start businesses so that they can be financially independent, provide stability for their families, and have more control over their futures.
We love the awareness her support generates and the way that small donations really do equate to substantial changes in the lives of Ethiopian women. Similarly, every $30 donation to Dignity Period provides menstruation supplies and education for five girls for 18 months and helps the Mariam Seba Sanitary Products Factory employ local women.
While listening to Jen tell the crowd about her life, her book, and why she supports women in Ethiopia, I enjoyed knowing that she and I were on different but parallel paths working toward a common goal. We are all stronger together, and together, we will make a difference in the lives of girls and women in Ethiopia.
To learn more about Jen Hatmaker, her book, Of Mess and Moxie: Wrangling Delight out of this Wild and Glorious Life, and the Legacy Collective, visit her website.