We’re often asked “why does The Leprosy Mission Australia have a shop?”
The answer is simple enough: it helps people affected by leprosy, like Sangwan (pictured below), in four different and powerful ways.
We’ve featured Sangwan before. She was raised by her father (her mother was divorced and shunned because she had leprosy). By the time Sangwan turned nine, signs of leprosy appeared on her body. Her father sent her to McKean Rehabilitation Centre for treatment where she was cured.
Early diagnosis and treatment is an essential part of defeating leprosy. But it’s also essential that people affected by leprosy have opportunities to obtain an independent and sustainable livelihood and the dignity of fulfilling work. At McKean, Sangwan was also able to obtain an education and was trained to make traditional Thai lacquerware and cards.
By purchasing products from the Cure One catalogue you’re supporting people like Sangwan as they overcome the barriers of leprosy, disability and poverty and earn an income. You’re giving them independence. There are four unique and important ways that your shopping makes an impact:
1. You help fund your projects around the world4>
2. You empower producers affected by leprosy, disability or poverty to build a sustainable livelihood
Each catalogue gets better every season. We’re constantly expanding the selection of products that are directly made by people affected by leprosy, disability and poverty. The Cure One Spring catalogue features new products from the McKean Rehabilitation Centre in Thailand where Sangwan works. By producing products, contributing to the economy and receiving a fair wage, people affected by leprosy can participate in meaningful work, support their families and help build their local economy. Your purchase of these products directly benefits artisans, like Sangwan, at McKean Rehabilitation Centre in Thailand, as well as people at similar centres in Nepal, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh.
3. You supply everyday needs with practical Gifts of Love
Gifts of Love are practical gifts—such as a scholarship, a self-care pack or even a buffalo—that directly benefit people affected by leprosy, disability and poverty. These gifts also help improve the living standards of whole communities.
When you buy a Gift of Love, you’re making a tax-deductible donation to an actual project of The Leprosy Mission Australia. Your purchase of a Farmer’s Tool Box, for example, provides all the training and tools necessary for a person affected by leprosy. The dollar value listed for each gift is an estimation of how much that part of the project costs. Your donation funds this part, along with other vital activities of that project. If the part you buy has already been funded, it will be used in a similar way to what you intended. You will be sent a giftcard for the item you’ve donated. You can keep it or pass it on to someone else to show that you have given it on their behalf.
4. You ensure fairness up the supply chain with Fair Trade products
Fair Trade products mean that extra regulations have been observed to protect and empower disadvantaged producers in developing countries. They guarantee justice and sustainability up the supply chain. Fair Trade is not perfect, but it guarantees producers with a minimum price for their product—a safety net to ensure that if market prices drop, Fair Trade producers won’t go into deficit. Fair Trade also ensures additional money is paid to producers so they can invest back into their business and improve their product. By purchasing Fair Trade, you’re demonstrating your commitment to products that give people a fair go, and protecting people and the earth from exploitation.
The products that you purchase, not only bring joy to you and the one who receives them, but also to others who are in great need. When you shop with us, proceeds help support the many people that benefit from projects of The Leprosy Mission Australia. Some products, like the new Restore range of lifestyle products, are exclusive to The Leprosy Mission Australia.
Thank you for shopping with The Leprosy Mission Australia and making a difference.
You can pray for artisans and suppliers affected by leprosy, like Sangwan, on the National Prayer Weekend on 26-27 August. To commit to prayer at this time, or receive your free copies of the guidebook complete our contact form or call 1800 537 767.