Where It Began
Dark was settling in around our village. The last of the day's light was streaked across the sky, a pink and tangerine stretch of cloud that rested above the treetops. Martine and I were peeling beans, pounding garlic and peppers and salt together with our pestle and mortar. The kids in the orphanage were still running around outside, despite just having bathed in the river only moments before. We were all sweating, it was Haiti, sweat is par for the course. Martine stopped a moment, curled and uncurled her fingers, reached to the sky and stretched her back, yawned. She was tired, no, exhausted. I could see the defeat in her hunched back, the way she looked through me while I talked about tomorrow's events. I stopped pounding the spices and asked her what was on her mind.
I was praying in the car recently, desperate to find a way for these women in Haiti that I love so dearly, and this idea came to me. A collection of sorts, of high quality items, some made in Haiti, others supporting locally, that I could sell and it would benefit these women.
Then Rachel popped into my mind, forcefully and without hesitation. I called her immediately, spewing all these ideas and thoughts and it felt like a blaze of fire pouring out of me.
Rachel laughed into the phone. "You should call it Waymaker," she said. "Because God will make a way."
We both got chills, and sat for a moment in silence. "Will you do it with me?" I asked her. Without pause, she answered, "yes."
And so it was born, The Waymaker Collections.
Rachel and I met in college, and for the last seventeen years have formed a friendship of trust and laughter. We see each other often, but living in different states makes it more difficult than we'd like. She has two little boys, Kai and Thorin, and an older son, Jaxon, with her husband, Jarad. I live in Connecticut, still a single mama to my eight year old, half Haitian, little wonder, Levi. Life is good, we can't complain.
What It Is
We curate quarterly collections of beautiful things for you to purchase. Each collection is attached to a different cause. Each cause will get the net profits of whatever is purchased from that collection. We've set out to change the world. That's how all missions need to start, right? We're going to make a difference. We'll sell the earrings, because we all want the earrings, but we want them much more when they're feeding a family, or providing clean drinking water, or ministering to a teen on the street. Our collections are not limited to Haiti, because we want to have a reach far and wide. We all have attachments to certain causes, and through The Waymaker Collections we aren't limited to who we can help to make a difference through their charitable work. Have a cause that you think we should consider? Let us know!
Come along for the ride. We're so glad you're here.
The world is dark, let's light it up.
"I'm worrying about when the mission groups leave," she said. "I won't have any money coming in then. I have no husband, John, no children, and there's no work in this country." She sighed, fighting back tears. "I feel so happy now, with the missionaries and the children and working here in this kitchen beside you, but I'm afraid to feel this happiness fully. It'll be gone tomorrow. Haiti is like that, fleeting security, momentary happiness. There's just never a way. God has to make a way for all things."
I let her words sink in, not knowing what to say. I'd lived in Haiti for almost five years at this point, but my worries were never the same as hers, never even coming close to the true reality of living on the tiny island under the sun.
It's been almost ten years since that conversation took place. I still talk to Martine almost daily, hearing the struggles that continue in Haiti, but now worse, more volatile. But it's not just Martine. So many of the people I knew there are still suffering to find a way in life. I was sending them money here and there, but being a single mother myself, extra money wasn't always easy to come by.
"We all want the earrings, but we want them so much more when they're feeding a family, or providing clean drinking water, or ministering to a teen on the street."
Let's keep it simple. The Waymaker Collections help to provide for the needs of different causes through the selling of our collections of high quality products. We want to make a way when all feels lost. We want to be a light in the darkness. Even if it's small, a light is still a light.