Sunday, February 7, 2010

"It's not personal, it's business." - Joe Fox
"Whatever else anything is, it ought to begin by being personal. " Kathleen Kelly
(you've got mail)

I think it's weird how the corporate world has gotten so big and impersonal that we had to create a different movement called "fair trade" or "social business". Why can't all businesses see the importance of bettering the lives of not just consumers and buyers but also the betterment of whole communities of people who need an opportunity such as the "western market". Shouldn't that be what it's all about - bettering the lives of everyone around the world...around your office? To me..that equals success..not the amount of money in your bank account. But should we just be buying things from "social businesses" because they have a story behind them? Should we really just buy more crap so that we can feel good about our purchases and the people behind them? Sometimes I wonder what in the world am I trying to accomplish with Tukula? Nobody needs new clothes. I don't want to be a part of the consumer world, really. I just want to create beautiful garments (because I really love fashion) and inspire my friends on the other side of the world to create their own opportunities along with allowing them to see that they are WORTH my time and are respectable young ladies. But for all this to work I need consumer to buy the garments that my friends will tailor. It's like a circle that I don't know how to get out of. How can I help people without having to rely on the western consumer world and it possible? Joe and I were really excited when we thought about selling our clothes in Uganda as well as the US and UK. We thought - we did it...we figured out a way to do this. But in all reality we will be making the most money in Uganda but Western Tourists. At the end of the day we were back at square one. And I can't help but wonder if there is any way to do this better. Can I be a better steward of my time, resources, and ideas?

Maybe I will just end up giving in to this consumer world just for the betterment of the young women I hope to serve effectively. Maybe I just need to swallow my pride and do this for them and them alone...because after all they are my ultimate priority. But rest assured friends I am still striving to find answers and new ideas. please continue to question the standards with me and let me know what you come up with. : )


  1. i wish i had the answers to help you but i'm glad i know the One who does and i'll pray to Him for you!

  2. it's a challenge indeed. in order to better Uganda as a whole--long term--goods and services are best off staying within the country. but sometimes in order to "jump start" things, those same goods and services must be exported. economics. i really don't like it, but it's one of the main spokes on the wheel that makes the world go around.

  3. Leigh wore a Suubi necklace the other week and everyone was interested in it. They are beautiful but the best part was getting to hear the story of y'all and Tukula and the ladies who make the necklaces. So, yes, it does seem like it's a paradox to be tied to our consumerism. However, maybe God desires to use it to put the need and hurt of the world, specifically Uganda, before a society that often chooses to ignore just how much we have.