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I NEED AFRICA

AFRICA NEWS, Clean Water, FROM THE FIELD, I NEED AFRICA, INSPIRATION, Uncategorized

Your mochas can become clean water.

Mocha Club’s community leader writes… Mvera is home to 300 villages in central Malawi. It is pretty difficult to get water in this area — because it is a hilly area full of rocks, the water springs dry out during the dry season and boreholes are hard to drill. There are two wells: one that functions and one that doesn’t and has been broken for years. So the 300 villages in Mvera all rely on this one functioning well — including those who live 3+ miles away from it. 

Mvera is also home to one of Mocha Club’s local community development classes. As the class spent time out in the community, listening to friends, neighbors, and local stakeholders, the gravity of the water situation became very clear — Lack of clean water is something that affects everything and everyone in the community.

Women and girls are often the ones forced to spend their days going back and forth to the one working well; women even keep mats at the well so they can rest while they wait in the long lines and the young girls miss school classes in order to help their families retrieve water.

The students in the community development class found that the local hospital was having a hard time keeping up with the rate of water-borne illnesses. It has even had to push expectant mothers out of the hospital because there is no water. In addition, new businesses don’t want to set up shop in a town without water either.

So the class went to work. They talked to local engineers, parts suppliers, professional builders and plumbers to get suggestions, cost estimates, and timelines. Fixing the old well — which they found out was dug in 1922, originally to 36 meters deep — was time consuming and expensive as it had gotten so full of sand and mud over the past 95 years that it now went only 7 meters deep. So they went back to work, consulting more members of the community and water experts. Turns out they had local resources to complete a piping project that would take water from the functioning well to a new purification tank further out and then, once treated, from the tank through smaller pipes to a distribution area easily accessible by 5,000 people.

They put together a proposal which included a plan for strategically piping water and purifying it for those communities in need. The proposal includes how they would utilize local resources and also the opportunity for funding to make this project become a reality and sent the proposal to Mocha Club’s local Country Director. It went through a few rounds of vetting — ensuring the project was feasible, practical, locally sustainable — now it is time to act.

Here’s where you come in — your mochas can become 5dffe47c3570533b449d773d_372x560Mvera’s clean water. Your everyday generosity, together with the rest of the Mocha Club community, will be the reason 5,000 have safe drinking water, a functioning hospital, fuller schools, and new economic opportunities. And it will be the reason the next community, and the next community, and the next community after Mvera get clean water.

Mocha Club Members, THANK YOU!

 

Not a member yet? Want to help provide clean water to Mvera and other communities? Will you give up a few extra mochas this World Water Day?

Join today and we’ll send you a Mocha Club water bottle as a thank you!


 

#mcjourney2016, #mcjourney2017, AFRICA TRIPS, FROM THE FIELD, I NEED AFRICA, PERSPECTIVES

“Go. Go and see the power of a mocha.”

Have you ever thought about how the places you live and work and enjoy were once just an idea in someone’s head? Think about your school, your home, your favorite coffeeshop. They all began with a dream; a hope to support the life and joy of your community. 

During MC Journey 2016, this awareness transformed our 12-day trip into a deeply meaningful experience.  Each and every place we visited held a special memory — chatting with students and teachers at New Dawn, dancing with the women at HEKO while rain fell around our shelter, sitting on the sunlit porch at the Women at Risk recalling the darkness of the drive we took the night before — but more than anything, I loved hearing stories of how and why it all began. 

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Before our visit to each organization, we sat across the table from their founders as they graciously shared their personal journey leading to the realization of a need in their community.  We had the privilege of hearing how places like New Dawn, HEKO, and Women and Risk were once dreams, turned into reality, and sustained by the support of every Mocha Club member.  Can you imagine walking into a place for the very first time with that understanding of its history? 

The hardest work you will do on your MC Journey will be to let go of your expectations and be fully present during every conversation, every story, every offer of service given to you.  You will most certainly do more listening than labor.  You will come to find that you are there not to serve, but be served.  You will so clearly see how one cup of coffee supports African leaders with a vision for loving their community.  You will see how one cup plants hope in many who felt hopeless, and how another empowers them to live independently in health and financial stability.  But most importantly, you will be filled to the brim with a joy so moving I can hardly put it into words. Go. Go and see the power of a mocha.

I NEED AFRICA, INSPIRATION, MOCHATERNS

Mochatern Monday 09.12.16: “Sit, sit and watch for a bit. Listen, listen a while before you speak.”

This summer, I went to a faraway place. The dirt covers your feet there, the mountains loom large and the children shout “mzungu!” (white person) as you pass. I went to Bundibugyo, a small town in rural western Uganda, and it did not leave me where it found me.

While in Bundibugyo, I learned to say about forty words in Lubwisi, the local language. I learned to say hello, goodbye, and thank you. I could say chicken, cow, and goat. I was a far cry from any sort of real conversation. I learned to buy chapati (a tortilla-flatbread-pancake sort of thing) from the lady chapati maker on the corner, though I too often forgot to greet her before placing my order. I learned my way around the market, through stalls of cabbage, tomatoes, fish, beans, and rice, always struggling to figure out how Ugandan shillings worked in my American-dollar brain. Though I was welcomed and loved by both the community I lived in and the organization I joined, as I drove eastward to the Entebbe airport on my way out of the country in late July, I knew I’d barely scraped the surface.

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I think this gets at one of the biggest things I realized, in those weeks in Uganda: the immense length of time it would take to really become a part of the community. You can’t simply pop over the Rwenzori Mountains from Fort Portal and start enchanting all the locals with your enthusiasm, your willingness to help, or your care for children or elderly people or pregnant women. No, it takes a bit more than that. Because even if you’ve got the Lubwisi down, you’ve got an accent too; and do you really know the culture yet? Do you know why western Uganda is the way it is? Do you fully appreciate all the nuances of life there? And let’s not forget you’re a Mzungu, a white person from a place very far away. Sit, sit and watch for a bit. Listen, listen a while before you speak.

This lesson is one that has served me well, even after returning to America, and into my internship here at Mocha Club. Much of the work that Mocha Club supports is done in places like Bundibugyo, places where joy and brokenness and sorrow and gladness live side by side. The Home Again Children’s Home, for instance, a ministry supported by Mocha Club that provides a home for over 70 children, is in Kaihura, Ugandaa town I drove right through on my journey back to America. These are places with need, but they are not places devoid of of histories, of traditions, of language, or of people who love them. The joy for us comes when we listen, when we wait, and when we join in the work that is already being done.

That’s the real privilege, isn’t it? Even here in the States, somewhere around 8,000 miles from a place like East Africa, we who are a part of the Mocha Club get to join in this work. We get to go to shows, contribute a few dollars a month, see photos, and hear stories of the work already begunwith, not for or around or in spite of, the people in places like Kenya, Ethiopia, and Uganda. We join in. And maybe that’s all way more humbling than we expectedbut oh, see how much better it all is, and watch how much we learn.

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I NEED AFRICA

I Need Africa vv. 005 : CONTENTMENT

Since we launched the “I need Africa” 2.0 campaign a year ago, we’ve been pulling out quotes from the INA story to highlight as themes, to focus on the glorious truths that Africa gives us.


First, it was PEACE — with the launch of the Pocket Tee and fashionABLE INA scarf.  Then, it was LOVE — with the “Love is Sovereign”mug and Pocket Tote. Then we had JOY – when we partnered with Miriam Designs to create a “joy” necklace. And most recently, we highlighted GROW and partnered with Jessi from Naptime Diaries shop to provide a place for you to write down your story with a journal set.

Now, we are wrapping up the 5 version INA story with CONTENTMENT.

happiness

With the holidays already kicking into full gear, our minds are inundated with christmas trees, movies, christmas music, time with family, buying presents for everyone on your list, and more.  This year, we ourselves want to sit back and receive the gift of contentment.  We don’t need what we have, and we have what we need.  And our happiness is based on much more than the material.
need

 

 

 

 

 

 

We met Valerie and Chelsea from Love By Design at the Influence Conference this year and their hearts are full of a passion to support non-profits all around the world.  They created two exclusive print designs that will be available on our store. These phrases share our sentiment that we need Africa and we learn so much from our African friends.

OR you can get it free by joining MC (or inviting a friend to join your team!).*

*Limit 2 free items per person, per collection.
*If you have questions about inviting and your unique personal URL, email us at info(at)themochaclub.org
*Once you (or your friend) join, you’ll receive an email giving you instructions on how to get your free stuff!

 

 

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 Over the last year we’ve shared some of our favorite exerpts from the I Need Africa journal entry that has become the heart of our organization, as well as opportunities for you to share the story with your friends. As you might imagine, along with our passion for Africa, we have a love for writing down stories that impact our lives. Now it’s your turn, we’d love to hear your “I Need Africa” story. Maybe you’ve been to Africa and it changed your entire perspective, maybe you went on a short-term mission trip, or served someone in need. Regardless of the location or circumstance, we’d love to share your story of serving with the Mocha Club community. In exchange for your story we’ll send the first 30 people one of our brand new I Need Africa journals as an encouragement to keep writing your story. We want to hear about those times when what you learned trickled down from your head into your heart.

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beautiful photography by Madeline from Harper Photography [ harper photographs.com ]

 [email your story to info@themochaclub.org]

Featured, I NEED AFRICA

I Need Africa vv. 004 : GROW

Since we launched the “I need Africa” 2.0 campaign a year ago, we’ve been pulling out quotes from the INA story to highlight as themes, to focus on the glorious truths that Africa gives us.
First, it was PEACE — with the launch of the Pocket Tee and fashionABLE INA scarf.  Then, it was LOVE — with the “Love is Sovereign”mug and Pocket Tote. Then it was JOY – when we partnered with Miriam Designs to create a “joy” necklace.

Now, we are excited to GROW

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beautiful photography by Madeline from Harper Photography [ harper photographs.com ]

What’s the product?! We are so excited to announce a collaboration with our very dear friend Jessi from Naptime Diaries to design this two set journal bundle!  These journals are exclusive to Mocha Club and can be purchased in the MC store separately for $8 each or together for $14. 

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photography by Madeline from Harper Photography

 

OR you can get it free by joining MC (or inviting a friend to join your team!).*
We find that the more we continue to give to Africa, the more we receive, and we want to continue to challenge the perception that Africa needs only our pity and charity, and instead seek to reveal the truth that its people have much to offer.  And we want to GROW in that knowledge and share it with others.


Click below to watch the INA video and learn more about the heart behind what we do at Mocha Club…

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*Limit 2 free items per person, per collection.
*If you have questions about inviting and your unique personal URL, email us at info(at)themochaclub.org
*Once you (or your friend) join, you’ll receive an email giving you instructions on how to get your free stuff!

I NEED AFRICA, MERCHANDISE

Love is Sovereign – Happy Valentine’s Day!

Love is Sovereign VDay Mocha Club

It’s the season of cupids and candy hearts, but it doesn’t have to be all cheesy. We’re recognizing the LOVE that is all around…  the LOVE that calls us to consider others better than ourselves… the LOVE that shows unparalleled compassion and kindness to our neighbors… the LOVE that is sovereign.

Lindsay Letters LOVE is Sovereign Mocha Club INA print

We chose to highlight the “Love is Sovereign” quote from our I need Africa story a couple of months ago, and partnered with Lindsay Letters to create some beautiful products that celebrate the theme. They were so popular, that we’ve decided to bring them back for a limited time…

Mocha Club Love is Sovereign Lindsay Letters mug

That’s right, the beloved “Love is Sovereign” mug is back — but the only way you can get it is by joining Mocha Club as a monthly member! Once you join, we’ll send you both a mug and the “Love is Sovereign” 5×7 chalkboard print!*  And, even better, you’ll know that each month your small sacrifices are sending LOVE across the ocean to make a big impact in Africa.

Already a member? There’s a great deal here for you, too… you can get both items free just by successfully INVITING a friend to join your team!*

Joining and/or Inviting is the only way to get the mug… but if you want to grab an extra print or 2 for those you love… it’s back in the Mocha Club Store for $8!! (frame not included)

Love is Soveriegn Mocha Club & Lindsay Letters print

*Limit 1 free combo item (mug + print) per person. 
*If you have questions about inviting and your unique personal URL, email us at info(at)themochaclub.org
*Once you (or your friend) join, you’ll receive an email giving you instructions on how to get your free stuff! 

I NEED AFRICA, PERSPECTIVES, PURPOSE PROJECT

Alex’s Novel Project

We’ve loved watching people get outside of their comfort zone to make a difference with the Purpose ProjectEach project is about an apprehensive ambition — that thing you’ve been wanting to do but haven’t had a reason or the courage to do so. By adding some purpose & raising money for people in Africa, your goal becomes a little less about you and more about doing something big & fun with your community. It’s been fun to share Carly’s Tattoo ProjectBrittany’s Pink ProjectLena’s Plunge Project, and Nathalie’s Recording Project.

Next up, hear from Alex, a student at Belmont University in Nashville, as she shares about her Novel Project

Alex Purpose Project

Last May, I traveled to Africa for the first time ever. Africa is just always one of those places where you go in with one expectation and leave with a new lease on life. Essentially, the “I Need Africa” campaign is exactly how I felt when I came back. I need Africa more than Africa needs me. I met the most beautiful, wonderful people during my time in Botswana and South Africa. The most beautiful of them all? The children. I have never felt so much love from such young people before. Even though we couldn’t understand each other’s words, we understood each other’s hearts and in the grand scheme of things, that’s all that matters. Since my return to the United States, my heart has still been living in the memories of those sweet children. Constantly I think about the best ways I can love them from here the way that they loved me during my time there. Then I remembered the Mocha Club. I had heard about the organization during a presentation given by Matt Wertz during my freshman year at Belmont. I had always been intrigued but couldn’t participate until I was generating my own income, which happened to be this year. This seemed to be my chance. I couldn’t deny that this is exactly where God was placing my heart and my future, so I put my trust in Him and followed with my eyes closed.

Initially I began by doing a monthly donation to the orphan care program, which daily still warms my heart. The ability to help extended families and other loved ones provide for these orphans is exactly what I was hoping to be a part of. Then, I heard about the Purpose Project through another presentation at Belmont. I initially just came to support Mocha Club, as it has become such a large part of my life, but I left there knowing exactly what I had to do. When I got to my next class (before class started, of course) I took out my iPad and started my registration for a project of my own. I just had to think of a goal to set for myself if I raised the intended amount of money. I thought about how I’d always wanted to write a novel and, though a lofty goal, I instantly knew that was the direction I was supposed to go with this.

I set the goal of $1250, which provides for 5 orphans for an entire year. By the end of the project I’d raised a total of $1330, more than I even asked for. I could not be more grateful for this experience, especially because people I don’t even know donated to this project. Yes, my family played a large part, but less of a whole than I thought. It just warms my heart that people believed in my endeavors and this project enough to help me out.

Currently, I am working on the first chapter of my novel, which will tie into the theme of I Need Africa. It will follow the life of an orphan and the woman whose life is forever changed by the appearance of this child who she thought needed her help. Well, I’m sure you get the gist of it. For the rest of the story, you’ll just have to read it when I’m finished!

If you’re looking to do a project of your own and you’d like to talk about it, you can reach me at xandraraye@gmail.com. Also, for those of you who want a sneak peek at the novel, I’ll be posting the first few pages up on my blog soon!  If you feel God tugging at your heart as you find yourself checking up on everyone else’s projects daily, it’s probably time to start one of your own. I would love to chat with you about it! Trust me, it’s one of the greatest things I’ve ever been a part of. You won’t regret it.

Have your own idea? Submit them here or email info(at)themochaclub.org… we’d love to help!

I NEED AFRICA, MERCHANDISE

JOY.

Since we launched the “I need Africa” 2.0 campaign last September, we’ve been pulling out quotes from the INA story to highlight as themes, to focus on the glorious truths that Africa gives us.
First, it was PEACE — with the launch of the Pocket Tee and fashionABLE INA scarf.  Then, it was LOVE — with the “Love is Sovereign” mug and Pocket Tote.

Now we are celebrating JOY

JOY-quote+necklace

And our new product? We are so excited to announce another jewelry piece in collaboration with our friends at Miriam Designs.  This necklace is exclusive to Mocha Club, with the word JOY stamped on it. And you can get it free by joining MC (or inviting a friend to join your team!).*
This product is also available in the MC store for $30.

JOYonwood

JOY Mocha Club Miriam Designs INA necklace

We find that the more we continue to give to Africa, the more we receive, and we want to continue to challenge the perception that Africa needs only our pity and charity, and instead seek to reveal the truth that its people have much to offer.
Click below to watch the INA video and learn more about the heart behind what we do at Mocha Club…

INA video - JOY screenshot

 

*Limit 2 free items per person, per collection.
*If you have questions about inviting and your unique personal URL, email us at info(at)themochaclub.org
*Once you (or your friend) join, you’ll receive an email giving you instructions on how to get your free stuff!

I NEED AFRICA, MERCHANDISE

Lovely Lettering.

Mocha Club + Lindsay Letters

We cannot be more excited for this collaboration with the oh-so-lovely Lindsay Letters. Lindsay uniquely hand-letters and illustrates each of her designs and when we had the vision of turning some of the “I need Africa” (INA) story into prints, we knew she was the gal for the job. Lindsay not only brings ridiculous talent, but also immense heart and passion into her work. We are so grateful for the way her lovely lettering brought these words to life…

Lindsay Letters I need Africa  Mocha Club print

1st was the phrase that has become the heart behind all that we do: “I need Africa more than Africa needs me”.  Barrett (Mocha Club’s founder), while living in Ethiopia in 2008, had the thought of “I need Africa more than Africa needs me” keeping him awake, and he had to put this feeling into words… read the entire story.

Lindsay Letters Peace INA Mocha Club Print

Then, with the launch of INA 2.0, we decided to pull out some quotes from the story to highlight as themes. The first theme is PEACE:  “Possessions in my hand will never be as valuable as peace in my heart”.  This quote was printed on the inside of the Pocket Tee, and promoted with the first round of INA products.

Lindsay Letters LOVE is Sovereign Mocha Club INA print

The second theme is LOVE: “Love is Sovereign”.  This is printed on the inside of the Pocket Tote (as well as on some other new products we’ve launched for the holidays!) and is being promoted with this second round of INA products.

>> We are offering these 5×7 prints in the new APARTMENT section of the Mocha Club store, available for $8 each, or $25 for all 3!

Lindsay Letters Mocha Club INA Print Set

( thanks to Christine of {declare} photography for the photos! )

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I NEED AFRICA, MERCHANDISE

INA fashionABLE scarf

We launched the exclusive “I need Africa” fashionABLE scarf at the INA 2.0 launch. The first edition featured cobalt blue stripes (coordinating nicely with the cobalt blue stripes on the Pocket Tee!).

The second edition is here… and the stripes are now a brilliant emerald green! (It is the color of the year, y’all.) We showed you earlier this week how the Pocket Tote is also sporting this fabulous color.

INA fashionABLE scarf

We teamed up with fashionABLE to further tell the story of “I need Africa more than Africa needs me.” The core of “INA” challenges the perception that Africa needs only our pity & charity, and instead seeks to reveal the truth that its people have much to offer. Made by Africans who have been given new opportunity, this scarf symbolizes the heart behind INA: that Africa, with all its need, has much to give & teach us.

INA fashionABLE scarf emerald 1

This INA fashionABLE scarf is the perfect weight for every season, and the mist grey base color compliments almost any outfit. And with a story of creating jobs for at-risk women, it’s the perfect gift with meaning!

>> Grab the INA fashionABLE scarf for $32 in the Mocha Club store.

*All INA products (scarves, pocket tee, & pocket tote!) are available as a FREE incentive for joining Mocha Club monthly and/or inviting a friend to join

INA fashionABLE scarf emerald 2

( thanks to Christine of {declare} photography for the photos! )