Today, our blog along with other blogs around the world make up Blog Action Day’s Power of We Campaign.  We means a lot of things to COME UNITY. We have a lot of we’s to celebrate. 

At COME UNITY, ‘WE’ is our Board of Directors and Advisory Board of Directors. They are the wise Meghan Nesta, the perky Jess Petrolati, Ashley Hughes the cheerful, AJ Petrolati the insightful, Daniel Naylor the creative, Kait Korber the go-getter and more. This group has met monthly, stated their heartfelt passion and beliefs without pause to each other, volunteers, newcomers and people we don’t know. They have sat around many tables and planned the biggest to the tiniest details of trips, budgets, fundraising events and meetings. They have oozed passion for COME UNITY to pretty much everyone in their lives and without them, we would not be where we are this day.

‘WE’ is our A+ volunteers. There is a small group we turn to first for things like, oh, putting on a 6k race, staffing events, selling beads and any other random odd jobs we can think of. They are people like Becky Rinehart and Erin Glassley, in Indiana with 5 children between them who have put on a 6k race in Indiana two years running. They are people like the Romagnoli family: each involved and contributing in their areas of expertise, Anthony with financial advice, Sarah with her connections and creative edge, Gabi with her sweet video skills. They are Joanne, who’s second grade class raises money for COME UNITY each year, Sarah who edits all kinds of important documents from Michigan, Nicole, Matt, Betty, Pam and Maureen who say yes whenever we have a need.

‘WE’ are the folks who come to our events and help us raise funds. At the end of the day, we need dollars to do what we do.  These are people like David James, Kathy Caruso and Tom Swope who each walk or run our 6k Race, each proud to go 6 kilometers and raise a little money for people lacking clean water. They are people like Matthew Collins, the first purchaser of beaded goods from our Etsy Store to support our women in Kenya. They are people like the Hughes Family, The Kruty Family and the NU Class, some of the 31 glorious families and individuals who sponsor 31 girls in Kenya so that they are afforded the chance to go to school and have a different kind of life.

‘WE’ are our partners in Africa. They are leaders, community members, hosts, children, grown-ups, Kenyans, Ethiopians, Ugandans, and friends. They are people like Helene Van der Roest, head of Tuugane Amani Kenya, our project overseer and partner in Kenya that ensure our projects are all successful. They are Mekebib Desta and John Kiroka, both outstanding honorable respected African men who have helped teach us how to best aid their communities.  They are people that now drink clean water, girls now going to school, people living more respectable lives through our sustainability programs. In fact, many have become friends. Those friends are also teachers, for their gratitude for the smallest blessings in life teach us how to be more grateful. Their joy despite often incredibly trying circumstances teaches us to live with an attitude of grace. Their true friendship instructs us that despite appearance, background and culture, on the inside we are each human; we need love, we have heartache and we have a way of enduring.

‘WE’ includes you. If you’re reading about us for the first time or if you sit on the Board of Directors, we invite you into a deeper journey with us. We believe that in giving we are changed and it is our duty to generously share what we have with those less fortunate. We challenge you to more. We love the quote by Margaret Mead that says, “Never doubt that a thoughtful caring group of individuals can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” With you on our journey we are impacting more lives, sending more children to school, giving more people clean water to drink, affording self-sustaining respectable lives for more people in the third world.  Together we are more powerful.  Thank you for being part of our WE