the blog of jewelry designer

August 19, 2010

"GAIA" --meaning Goddess of the Earth

Recently I have been inspired by a woman named Paula Minnis who started a company called GAIA. Her involvement with the IRC (International Rescue Committee) led her to mentoring a Burmese refugee and mother of two, Catherin, whose story of struggle and oppression inspired Paula to start GAIA. GAIA's mission is to empower and employ refugee women from dire situations across the world. With a sustainable income these women are given the chance to make a new life for themselves in the U.S.


How Paula's volunteer work transformed her life:
In her own words, "I volunteered with several organizations in Dallas including
Attitudes & Attire, Genesis Women's Shelter, and Children's Cancer Fund. I also traveled to Peru last summer with an organization called Global Vision International, where I built fuel-efficient stoves for indigenous communities in the Andes.

Upon returning, I increased my commitment to the IRC, and became really focused on ways in which to improve the lives of the refugee women after they are resettled here. My goal with GAIA is to help marginalized women in our very own community, because once they feel empowered and their dignity is restored, they in turn inspire and influence their own it ideally becomes a lasting positive change!"

The name “GAIA” - meaning “Goddess of the Earth” - was chosen as a way to honor all women, from the ones who make GAIA products to the ones who purchase or receive them.

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