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Issue 14-6

Does This Give You Any Ideas?

Karen Mains and Mary Ogalo
Karen Mains and Mary Ogalo scheming
along an African garden path about GBP.

For the rest of this month, I’m setting up a bag shop in our living room in West Chicago. Everything is 20% off! Contact me for the address and times when I’m available for you to drop by. Karen Mains’ email is Mobile phone: 630-338-3604.

Passionate people have stepped up and have ungrudgingly given enough donations to cover the almost $2000 we were behind in paying Mary Ogalo’s salary for February and March and the rent for the office and Global Bag Project sewing center for the same months. I am relieved and grateful beyond words. I can be fierce when it comes to our friends overseas.

Due to the April 2 slaughter at the Garissa University College, everyone in Kenya is unsettled, and I am furious. This righteous anger comes from someplace deep in me.

I can’t do anything about lawlessness, or the thought that news reports say these al-Shabaab executioners were jovial as they murdered 147 students in cold blood. We can’t do much, but we can stand beside those with whom we have dreamed dreams—creating a microenterprise venture together that will help hard-working women lift themselves out of poverty. When David and I are behind financially at the ministry, it’s easy to get emotionally low. Small and large encouragements from friends restore our faith in humanity, remind us that God cares about us and that the Enemy is, indeed, a defeated foe.

Think of those for whom violence is always just around the corner. Are there ways you can help us help these women help themselves?

This is what we need: We need to sell the products here in the States so we can wire funds to keep the women working and to employ others who have been trained as seamstresses. Visit the Global Bag Project on ETSY or check out

I would also like to start a capitalization fund with donations of $1000–$2000. Often, we can’t develop new ideas because we can’t pay for them; simple Business 101 principle. If you are a businessperson, and want to assist in our capitalization fund, checks marked “Capitalization Fund” can be sent to Global Bag Project, Box 30, Wheaton, IL 60187. We will gladly sent you a tax-deductible receipt.

See if the following photos give you some ideas of how to use large, medium-sized, or small book-bags for woman-to-woman-empowerment initiatives.

bridesmaid gifts
Bridesmaid gifts. Great idea for a bride like Hanna T., who we met when she was interning at Africa International University. That’s a Glocal Gal. Live locally, but think globally.

book bags for kids
Book Bags for Kids. Let them know the story of the bags. Moms in Africa make them to sell so they can pay their kids’ tuitions. You will be turning out Glocal Kids. Good job!

sewing-class graduates
Sewing Class Graduates: Sewing-room-made gowns, caps, graduation ceremony, smiles and that all-wonderful graduation certificate. Teacher (on left), Mary Ogalo (near center left), a couple Kenyan GBP board members. Sewing machines are made available to graduates on a work/loan arrangement.

East African fabrics on chairs
East African fabrics on chairs


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Karen Mains

Karen Mains

Copyright 2006-2015 Mainstay Ministries. All rights reserved.

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