This post was written by HKI’s ChildSight® grant writer, Jill Mosebach
I never gave much thought to the soothing properties of lavender. But there I stood in a scented L’OCCITANE boutique in lower Manhattan registering to win a trip to Provence. My initial quest was to find holiday greeting cards, which were scheduled to arrive in L’OCCITANE boutiques on November 29th.
A sales associate named Annie pointed to a basket in front of the register and cheered, “Yes! 100% of the proceeds go to the Helen Keller Foundation to give children free glasses. I love this!”
She was mostly correct (it is Helen Keller International) and wholly genuine.
The greeting cards culminated from a partnership between L’OCCITANE, a French beauty company with a charitable arm, and Helen Keller International (HKI), a nonprofit – and my employer – that relies on support from foundations, corporations and individuals to prevent blindness and reduce malnutrition among the world’s poor.
Akin to MAC’s “Kids Helping Kids” card campaign, in which HKI participated in 2008 and 2009, L’OCCITANE’s “A Season of Giving” cards feature original artwork created by children – for children.
The artists are middle-school students at a Connecticut public school served by HKI’s ChildSight® program, which provides free vision screenings and prescription eyeglasses to low-income children in the U.S.
Every penny from the sale of these cards will support ChildSight®.
The students, ages 10 to 15 years old, were asked to imagine their favorite winter or holiday sights and traditions. Using colored markers and pencils, they created images to reflect their personal memories. Of the many talented students who participated, five designs were chosen. Here are two of my favorites:
The cards present a stunning range of traditional holiday scenes and dreamlike imagery. Each card contains an embossed Braille message and reads:
May the spirit of giving inspire
your holidays to overflow with
warmth, beauty, and joy.
Annie sold me five packs, which, at a total of $25, covers the cost of providing one child with a vision screening and a pair of eyeglasses to help them focus in school. Please join me in doing the same! If L’OCCITANE sells enough cards this month, ChildSight® could serve an additional 4,500 students. That’s incentive enough to give this season!