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Off the wall question........

Old 03-02-2016, 07:37 PM
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Default Off the wall question........

In the 10 years I have been hanging out on THT I have learned to never underestimate the collective brain power and connections Dockside dwellers have. .........

So I'm going to just throw this out here. Might get a little long.......

About a year ago I went on a trip to Guatemala with one of the son in laws and a grand daughter. It was with an organization called World Orphans and an in country partner, AMG schools. They work with kids in the very worst parts of Guatemala City that have no chance......I mean NO chance unless they get help.
The World Orphans organization finds local entities such as a school or a local church that is working with these types of kids and sets up partners from around the world to support them. These entities provide food, medical care, clothes, education and of course, Jesus and the message of hope.
Hope is what these kids do not have.
They are often living on their own with both parents not in the picture. The parents are dead, or have abandoned them, or sold them. These kids are often scooped up by gangs because the gangs provide a sense of belonging and some semblance of physical/material support.

We were so struck by the need in that country that when we told the rest of my kids and their families, we took it upon ourselves to sponsor one of the small churches in that area to the tune of about $8,000 per year. So far we've been able to make it every month.

My heart was just wrecked seeing kids and families picking their existence out of the dump in the middle of the city. Then to see some of these same kids in the school there, in clean clothes, well fed, happy, learning, and being prepared to be able to get out of the poverty cycle..... it all just clicked.

Anyhow, I'd like to do more to help these people out. They are industrious and resourceful, definitely not lazy.....That's a stereotype that went out the window quickly.
We visited the Antigua and Atitlan areas and toured a coffee plantation and I was struck by the craft of the people.
The woven goods, pottery and leather products they make by hand are beautifully done and that got me to thinking......what if I could bring some of those things to the US and sell them here?.....what if I could return some of the proceeds directly back to the people that made them over and above what they usually get paid? What if I could get the people who buy these things involved in helping these kids out of the endless cycle they are in?
How many kids could be reached and how many lives could be changed or even saved.

So I'm picking the collective THT mind here....
What do I need to know to import clothing, dry goods, leather items and maybe coffee?
I'm thinking I'd have to set up some sort of business presence in the country and have absolutely no idea what that would involve.
I'm also at a loss as to how funds would be distributed to the people that make the crafts and products. I'd guess half the economy of the country is "off the books". Not as a means of evasion of any sort, it's just that chaotic.

Talk to me.
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Old 03-02-2016, 07:57 PM
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My wife used to be in charge of organizing the mission trips at our church and went on a lot of trips. They would put in wells with a hand pump in remote villages and do classes on stuff like first aid. They also sponsored a large school/orphanage in Haiti, which sounds similar to the conditions you mention.

Maybe you could find an import store that would be interested in working with you.
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:00 PM
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start here

http://www.cbp.gov/trade/basic-import-export
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by bluffman2 View Post
Looks like a good place to begin! Thanks Bluffman
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:12 PM
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I do a lot of exporting....that site helped me ten folds....its a lot different for you, because youd be non-profit
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:13 PM
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can you get me one of those blue crosses in the first picture?
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:20 PM
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Well that's what I aim to do this next trip to visit our little church down there.
Make arrangements to bring stuff like that back. I'll see what I can make happen.
We leave April 1st.
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:23 PM
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let me know cost plus shipping to 39562
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:29 PM
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I get a bang out of that picture of my Grand daughter Madelyn with those 3 boys. She had a bag of Gummy worms and was sharing with them. They had never seen them before and it was chaos.
They were doing what 15 year old boys do in the presence of a pretty 15 year girl. Hamming it up.
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:32 PM
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lol
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:32 PM
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btw she beautiful
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Old 03-03-2016, 06:10 AM
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Just a thought, you might consider hooking up with one of the co-ops or free trade import stores up in our neck of the woods. Higher Grounds coffee in TC already imports from down there and there used to be a store in TC called small planet fair trade, that did something like what you are interested in. The lady who ran it is still in the area and might be a great resource for you.

If you are interested in her name PM me and I will send it along.
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Old 03-03-2016, 07:13 AM
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Originally Posted by txj33p View Post
Just a thought, you might consider hooking up with one of the co-ops or free trade import stores up in our neck of the woods. Higher Grounds coffee in TC already imports from down there and there used to be a store in TC called small planet fair trade, that did something like what you are interested in. The lady who ran it is still in the area and might be a great resource for you.

If you are interested in her name PM me and I will send it along.

Absolutely!
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