No matter how close of attention you to pay to the news, it isn’t hard to get the sense that our world is in a discouraging state. While it could be easy to tune out the bad and only focus on the good, in the long run that won’t increase the marks of character that we long to see more of: Courage, integrity, kindness, compassion, peace.
We especially want to see more freedom in our world, too, and so we asked our friends at International Justice Mission for some ideas that anyone can employ this summer if you’re wanting to fight for justice, but unsure where to start.
1. Read up.
As we craft our summer reading lists, why not add in a few reads that ignite inspiration to make a better world? The more we educate ourselves about an issue, the easier it becomes to find creative ways to engage, as well as encourage others to do the same. Nonfiction books like The Locust Effect, Just Mercy, and Justice Calling or even fictional accounts like Behind the Beautiful Forevers and The Tears of Dark Water help to paint a picture of the challenges we’re confronted with, and the hope we can hold on to, as we seek to create a world where everyone has the chance to flourish and thrive.
2. Consume well.
It’s no surprise that we live in a culture engrossed in a materialistic, consumerist mentality. But quite often someone on the other end of the supply chain is paying the price for the discounts we receive. Make it a point to educate yourself about who makes your clothes, home goods, and food, and, if possible, try to buy from brands who are transparent when it comes to the labor behind their wares. Companies like Noonday Collection, Rose & Fitzgerald, The Little Market, Sseko, and Everlane make beautiful products that contribute to making a beautiful life for those they employ. It may cost you a little more to be a conscious consumer, but it will be well worth it to have the peace of mind that comes with knowing no dignity was sacrificed in the making of your new dress, linens or jewelry.
3. Spread the word.
There are more people held in slavery today than at any other point in human history. That statement alone should be enough to rally the world around bringing this crime to an end. But unfortunately, so many of the greatest injustices of our time go unnoticed and unaddressed simply because no one knows about them. If there is an injustice today that breaks your heart — whether modern-day slavery or lack of health care or the orphan crisis — tell your tribe, the fellow world-changers closest to you who you can count on to jointly take up the cause. Because unless we know, we can’t act.
…unfortunately, so many of the greatest injustices of our time go unnoticed and unaddressed simply because no one knows about them.
4. Give back.
One of the simplest and most effective ways to make a difference in the global fight for justice is to generously give of our resources to organizations that are already doing good work. International Justice Mission is doing the hard work of justice day-in and day-out with grit, determination and compassion. By signing up to be an IJM Freedom Partner, you are joining in the work of freeing families from brick kilns, girls from brothels, and young children from the horrors of cybersex trafficking. Giving to a well-regarded charity or organization is a sure-fire way to make sure your dollars make a difference.
What are some ways you’ve found to make our world a better place?
Image via Sara Forrest
We live very much in our community as much as we can. From preparing meals for elderly folks on our street to helping children in a horrible trailer park to partake in healthier activity at libraries and parks to gently refusing to back down on our switching our yard to gardens and naturalized plantings.
We vote with our wallet so to speak and will not patronize any business locally that uses illegal workers and help those workers find English classes and health care.
Most of all? We simply do not ever shop at Wal-mart, ever!
Then of course, there is the time spent at city council meetings trying to get funding for a skate and splash park, saving old trees and working with the Farmland Trust and Conservation agencies to protect wild lands and first growth forests. Most of our food is bought from local small farms and we grow most of our vegetables and soft fruits.
So, the big wide world is focused on by a few carefully chosen charities for we want our ten percent working for people not the big LLC mega churches that abound around here and we simply do not attend any functions sponsored by them even with friends.
It is very frustrating to see all the tax free money flowing into all these big faux places of worship and see how very little is used to make the world a better place!
Creating gorgeous sustainable fashion to provide young women with better alternatives to fast fashion.