I just purchased my mom’s Christmas gift and a friend’s gift yesterday at the WAR Chest Boutique in Naperville. I have already bought my sisters present there last week. For those of you who don’t know, WAR stands for Women at Risk and they are a nonprofit that rescues women from human trafficking. When they rescue a woman they don’t just say good luck have a nice life! Most women who are set on their own after being trafficked will be re-trafficked because it is the only life they know or they have become so broken they don’t know what else to do. WAR provides safe houses where they teach women skills such as sewing or beading and help them obtain an education if they desire. The WAR Chest Boutique is one of their brick and mortar stores that sells the products the women make. They also help at risk women and teach them how to sew or bead too to provide them with an ability they can use to make money. Their website is here, their Facebook is here and the Facebook for their store in Naperville is here (they have stores located in many different locations and states, you can find their locations on the Naperville FB and also shop online!). Please just visit them to learn more about what they do and how wonderful they are.
Anyway, I had applied and gone for an interview for an internship in September and hadn’t heard anything at all! I need the internship for my business degree and I wanted to intern at a nonprofit. This one I thought was perfect because first of all I agree and love the way they operate, how they create a sustainable system to help these women and second I can get retail experience and experience dealing face to face with customers since I’ll be working in the retail store.
They are a Christian based organization, I mean like very they are really really Christian. Some people believe that just because an organization is Christian means they are automatically 100% good. That’s not the case in my opinion, just like everything else there are good and bad organizations or some more helpful than others whether they are Christian or not.
Before I continue, I want to state that I’m not Christian or any other type of religion, however I’m an incredibly spiritual person, I pray and believe in a higher being, whether there is one or one thousand, I know there is something 100%, I can feel that energy through me every day of my life, but I don’t affiliate myself with any specific religion, I love them all. I’ve been to Catholic Masses, Protestant services, Brethren and Mennonite services, Buddhist Chanting ceremonies and prayed with Muslims. With each services or ceremony I’ve attended and every prayer I’ve said or participated in, I’ve felt the same warm love from everyone. That church or temple or whatever name you give a religious building has brought people together and has given them a strong, beautiful feeling of hope and safety and faith and pure love and that is what religion is here to do, teach love not separation and hate.
That brings me back to nonprofits. Instead of religion bring love, sometimes it divides people, even in nonprofits which are supposed to help people, not every single religious group, but some don’t offer the same help to everyone. What I love about WAR is that during my interview, she made it a point to explain that they don’t turn anyone away, whether they are straight or gay or transgender, it doesn’t matter, if someone needs help that’s what they are here to do. To me that is true Christianity, or the true point in any religion.
I was most nervous about that in my interview though, my religious view, not being Christian and I know they legally can’t discriminate of course and I’d never expect them to do that at all, but it was a concern. I think the biggest worry they had was that I wouldn’t feel comfortable in a church or with their Christian driven message, which I don’t have a problem with.
I’m just so elated and excited about this new part in my life! I can’t wait until this March when I can start. I’m so excited and nervous for being in a new job and surrounding, I’ve never done anything close to retail and seeing more of a management side of any business is so intimidating since there is just so much to do! I think this will be such an amazing experience and so enriching, I’m going to have the chance to learn so much and do what I love, work in helping someone else.