Each Friday, the another jennifer blog shares stories of those who incorporate philanthropy into their everyday lives – personally and professionally – in a creative and unique way. If you have a story you’d like to share, please contact Jennifer.
I’m doing things a bit differently for Philanthropy Friday today. I’m putting you up to a challenge. For as long as I’ve been writing this series, I’ve focused on simple ways in which people incorporate giving into their lives.
Philanthropy doesn’t have to mean donating money. That’s been my point. You can perform simple acts of kindness every day, and those simple acts can make a huge impact. And you know what? That makes you feel good. Really, really good. (Heck, it’s good for your health!)
So here’s my question: Have you ever had a once in a lifetime opportunity come by that could change your life forever?
I haven’t. I’m guessing most people haven’t.
What if you had an opportunity, and all you needed was a few votes of confidence? You’d want people to rally around you, right?
Well, I have a friend who has a once in a lifetime opportunity. Actually, I’ve blogged about his work as a maker and gushed about the bag he made me. Right now, that post is the second most popular on this blog. So, I’m guessing others appreciate the art in his handmade bags.
Jared Desimio was selected as a finalist from 2000 entries for the American Made Award by Martha Stewart Living. This is a big deal, my friends.
What does this contest mean to Jared and his family? Here’s what his wife, Hannah, wrote on Facebook:
This contest is more personal and emotional than people probably realize. Jared has been an artist for a long time, but has struggled to have enough money and time to do what he loves. I’ve always told him to make the best of what he has and that a time will come when he will have the time, space, and materials he needs to achieve his biggest dreams. I’m tired of having to tell him this, I want the time to be now.
Jared makes things because he has to. It’s really that simple. It’s as essential as food or water. He’s a tremendous artist and craftsman and will continue to do what he loves no matter what. I’d just really love more people to see his work and enjoy it.
He wants to build a Maine-based business founded on the values of craftsmanship, quality, and standing behind your product. He wants to make items that last years, not for a season. He’s building a business that are like his products: high in quality and integrity. This is a business founded on values and now searching for a way to make a profit, while most business start with trying to make a profit and then fill in the values later.
He represents everything that I want in my community. I think he represents a cause we can all rally around. If you feel motivated by Jared’s story and his love of what he does, can you help spread the word? It means so much and we are truly grateful.
How could you not vote for Jared?
He’s a talented, humble maker who is looking for your vote. And he needs it today, Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
Can we count on you to vote? Here are a few more reasons:
You’d be voting for someone’s dream to come true. How often do you get to do that?
Plus, I like to think that by doing something good for someone else actually brings more good your way.
So go vote. Vote now. Vote every day until Monday.
Let’s get Jared in New York with Martha Stewart!
If you’re still not convinced, visit a few of these links:
Jared on Twitter
Jared’s Facebook Page
Jared’s Etsy Shop
Join Our Party on Facebook!
Jared on Good Day Maine
Jared in the Bangor Daily News
Jared in The Forecaster
Just vote for Jared