Showing off

CareSA Designs had a lovely experience showing off all its crochet craft at the five day Kwa Zulu Natal Christmas Craft Market this December.

In the spirit of entrepreneurship more than 150 traders gathered at the City Hill Church auditorium in Hillcrest to show off their creations and hard work done during the course of 2016.   Certainly a work ethic is being developed to combat poverty.

As I quietly observed the people and their displays for progress I could not help ‘seeing’ an informal economic pillar being built for a better future.   Yes, not all will make the businessman or woman of the year, but there is resilience and resolve, and if perseverance is thrown in with good measure, it could make a small dent in poverty, and lay a foundation for a better future.

Entrepreneuring runs on Hope, develops imagination – where anything is possible – builds a necessary work ethic, releases expression and God given creative potential.

The other side of the coin however is getting to know the nuts and bolts of running a successful business.  This is another story altogether, yet has to be embraced by the budding entrepreneur,  if good  lasting results are to be obtained.  So the next phase would be to get business savvy, and look for mentors willing to take a walk with ‘the future economic builders’.   It may be a long walk, but a start has been made, and as they say … Rome was not built in a day.

Have a look at some of the 2016  CareSA Designs crochet craft range that was on sale at the Christmas Market this year, and feel free to leave a comment or two on new additions, improvements, or add some new ideas for developing a small enterprise.

All it takes is some pretty yarns, hooks, needles maybe a button or two and a little imagination to make a happy hobby – that one day will grow into a budding enterprise.

Here’s to diligence and to hope, and may the work of our hands prosper.

OFF TO THE MARKET PLACE

December 2015

Building an entrepreneurial enterprise is a very slow business indeed.   I suppose something like eating an elephant, you have to do it bite by bite !
Look out for the opportunities that come your way, and always be ready to go off to the market place.
The Christmas season is a time for giving gifts and sharing love, and that is why there are many craft markets being held all over the country.    And I suspect it is also a sign of the times we live in, as  many are seeking to make ends meet with their creative talents and innovative ideas.

CareSA Designs found itself at two markets.  One, the Hope Christmas Market, organised by Soul Action here in Durban.  It is rather a unique market in that its aim is to give opportunity to  Non-profit organisations, Community projects and individual entrepreneurs to show and sell their products to empower people economically.  This year’s theme was  “Buy and Uplift.”  And the Buyers did just that, and made the market very successful.      Here is a picture of the CareSA Designs trading table.

CareSA Designs at the Hope Christmas Market

Hope Christmas Market

The other market was the five-day KZN Christmas Craft Market Festival, held in the lovely setting of Hillcrest.  Much preparation was needed for this event, as vendors were provided with printed bar codes, and each and every item had to be individually priced.  With five days of marketing, more stock was needed, so I have been very busy indeed preparing for this amazing opportunity that came my way.

CareSA  Designs  at the KZN  Christmas Craft Market Festival  

And here are some pictures of CareSA Designs new creations, with a graphic message tag, to stir up people to be pro-active in making the new South Africa  work   viz. Kids of Africa, and Love SA.

Medium Purses
CareSA Medium Purse
Mini Purses
CareSA Designs Mini Purse
Flower Alice Bands
Flower Alice Bands
Kiddies Sling bags
CareSA   Large Sling Bags

I suppose it was a kindred spirit, who wants to see  the new South Africa work out well, and had two posters made with these words on the road poles: It won’t work ….. and a few metres away the other with: Until you do. We can all make South Africa work !  We can all do something positive.

I have to keep reminding myself that although the rewards for all my hard work may be small, I am colouring in the blocks of a much larger picture, and that persistance, and consistancy will bring the greater reward;  and to ever keep in mind  Matthew 13:31,32
Another parable He put forth to them, saying  “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field, which is indeed the least of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches.”

So then, to continue to work on in Faith Hope and Love, these three.

Change Your Mind, Change Your World.

August 2015

Change will happen, with or without us.

Circumstances can so entrench our thinking into accepting what seems to be the inevitable amid the stark demanding facts of life, that a change of mind is out of the question.   But, I ask, what is the use of having a mind, if you cannot change it ?  And every woman in the room will agree with me !
We can change our minds, our thinking, and so to change our worlds.

Change is inevitable when embarking on a road of new discoveries.
The subtle change may begin to happen when we are disgruntled with the status quo, a sure signpost on the road of change.  But more often than not change will first happen on the inside of us. Then as new challenges are explored more will be revealed of what is on the inside.   If we pay close attention, it will become a duel journey of self-discovery, sometimes surprising, sometimes scary !   Change brings with it a moving of boundaries, and that can be so uncomfortable.

It is quite a struggle to change a mindset, especially in the field of dire poverty, whether you are poor, or are working with the poor and needy people in community.  Many are stuck in the mindset of poverty, but this has to change when we develop the mindset of progress, let alone prosperity – which will require yet another mind leap.
Instead of ‘poverty’ being the dominating  mindset, what will happen if we should replace it  with ‘potential’.   In other words not look at the circumstances but at the people, and what’s in the heart of the people.  That will be a rich treasure-find indeed. And then would we arrange our minds, our perspectives, our lives and our service differently ?

Poverty is often invisible, until you go out and look for it.  I happened to be in the “down-town” of Durban, and saw the derelict neglected condition of the buildings, the scattered refuse, and the sight of a poor humanity etching out a living for itself, amid a scene set for crime, corruption and moral decay.   And yet just three blocks up was the wonderful promenade of palm trees, sunny beach umbrellas, ice cream, and happy kids. Row upon row of posh expensive hotels, that are caught up to form the bubble of excellence to impress the tourists.   But lets not be harsh on Durban,  every town has its “down-town” and its “up-town”.  Poverty is rife, everywhere,  if we look we will see it.
And its a huge global condition !  What are we going to do about it ?
So to change poverty to progress we are going to have to change our minds, our perspectives, our goals and  our actions.

The road marked Entrepreneur, such a trendy word on the lips of government, futurists and the unemployed youth, is a long steep journey out of poverty.   But what does it embrace?  What will it require to make the change from community development (giving to the poor) to entrepreneurial development (helping people on to self-help and own development).  In the end, if progress is the goal, then what will be the result of a nation chasing only after economic development, and leaving behind the “rich” wholeness of community – even if its poor and lacking in consumables.   There needs to be a plan for holistic social development alongside the national economic plan, or else all our futures will be lopsided, out of balance with inequality crime and corruption getting the prize of the century… again!
New thinking is required, a new road needs to be followed to see if there is the better future in “progress”,  for poverty is not an option.  We need to put people first, see their potential, which is the key to unlocking great treasures, and we need to  “nourish hope and enthusiasm for creative expression, or simple entrepreneurship”  – words of the writer James Patterson.

If we can only keep our heads, and our values in tack.  Money isn’t everything!
As we progress we must keep a hold on our “ubuntu”, our humanity, our integrity, our wholeness.  For as we have so vividly seen, money and power bring with it greed and corruption, which sadly is the state of our money gobbling global village as we know it today.

I have found it not any easy road, as I have naively begun my small entrepreneurial journey. Often I feel like just giving up.  Someone once said, – ” since I’ve given up hope, I feel a whole lot better” !!   It would be so much easier to just give up.  Really? – but no not just yet.

So CareSA Designs has produced a few new items for the 2015 season.    They are pretty summer  “infinities” or round scarves. They are done in a thin cotton yarn that produces a soft gentle neckline accessory.  I have created new light “shoulder wraps” done in a loose stitch, that can be  worn as a huge winter scarf too.  So two in one, – summer wrap or winter scarf.   I have  done them in textured yarns that make them snug yet light, unique and interesting.  Making a debut is the Bag Range, for the young and not so young.  Done in bright colours, some a shoulder sling bag, some just a handy purse.  Nice for gifts.
Part of the proceeds from the sales go to a fund for community service, especially those who work with the poor and needy in our society.

The trend is Entrepreneurial,  the theme is the potential of creativity, lets see if it brings us on the road to progress…even prosperity ?

What is the potential that lies dormant in your creativity ?  Explore and start your journey of discovery, and be amazed  – change your mind, change your world !