An Update Written by Becca, as she and the Travel Team were preparing to board a plane back to Nashville from San Francisco:
I wanted to share a few highlights from the past few weeks. Frannie Kieschnick, our amazing board member, welcomed us with hospitality fit for royalty and helped plan a full and amazing couple days. Her friend Amy Rao hosted a two-day market place at her house, with our team doing sales over $18,000 of Thistle Farms and Thistle Farms Global products!
From there, we had the chance to have a gourmet meal with Wendy Schmidt, who committed to funding our dream of the welcome mats through buying looms, shipping, and plane tickets. Wendy has even agreed to pay for a consultant to help with design and project management. She said at the dinner she believes the welcome mats made from life jackets by refugees will go viral.
Then she said, "These mats remind us the whole world is woven together".
It was a huge gift. Marcus is composing a melody to accompany the words on the Statue of Liberty--"Bring Me Your Tired and Poor."
We also had breakfast with the Isabel Allende Foundation. Seeing them all again was like a family reunion, and they recommitted to Thistle Farms for the 2017 year. Everyone we met sends their love to the whole community. They have paired down how they want to be involved and get more involved with the groups they are recommitting to. It's a season for them of digging deeper and getting closer to their communities.
Throughout the whole week, Abi (Director of Thistle Farms Global & The Studios), Tiffany (Currently Magdalene Resident & Thistle Farms Employee), and Regina (Magdalene Graduate & Outreach Coordinator) were amazing. It is a joy to share our message of hope in the wider world.
On our last morning, I took a walk with Frannie and Amy, as the sun rose.
Two wild coyotes walked across our path, reminding me that we are scavengers looking for pockets of grace in a pretty harsh world. We get to stay on the edges and search out where we are fed and bring a bit of inspiration back with us. They were a great sign.
As we left, we crossed the Golden Gate Bridge where Tiffany saw Alcatraz, that island rock that has come to symbolize the cruelty and isolation. So today, feel free to howl like a wild coyote for justice on behalf of women still isolated and in need of welcome around the world.
There is so much to do--everyone is working hard--but it is a wild and exciting journey.