This week I had the privilege of meeting Ashley, the store manager at WAR Chest Boutique in downtown Naperville.
I know. At first glance, it’s a really odd name. “WAR Chest? What kind of horrible stuff do they sell?!?”
But step inside and you quickly discover – not a dark place with skulls or guns – but a very attractive shop filled with terrific looking jewelery, scarves, art work, and all kinds of goods. No need to take my word for it, though. See for yourself:
As nice as the store looks, so what? No body wants shopping advice from me – why bother writing this? Because learning their story and mission makes WAR Chest Boutique a truly beautiful place.
It turns out, WAR stands for Women at Risk and the store is part of Women at Risk, International. They are a non-profit organization that operates safe houses around the world for women and children rescued from abuse, especially human trafficking.
The goods sold in the store are made by these trafficking survivors and 90% of the proceeds go to supporting the women and the safe houses for them. The founders of the organization are Christians and their work is motivated by their faith. I love how they describe their purpose:
WAR was established to place circles of protection around women at risk. The purpose and passion of this organization is to wrap arms of love around women and children, whispering the message that they were created for purpose and dignity.
To their credit, their passionate faith moves them to be non-sectarian in whom they help. As you can tell, I’m highly impressed with this organization and its store. In fact, I hope to schedule a time for the Boutique to bring some of their goods to sell on a Sunday morning at Woodridge UMC.
And if you need to buy gifts for Mother’s Day, I highly recommend going to downtown Naperville – or online – to “shop with a purpose.”
I know I will. For my money, nothing says “I love you” like freedom.