“They used to be making $1 a day crushing stones, and now they are making about $15 to $25 a day,” Tolsdorf said. “They are living in their own homes, sending their kids to school and eating.”
Same Sky is a support group for women who are all HIV positive. They must have a decent meal at least once a day to be able to ingest and keep down their powerful albeit free meds.
The women are all required to meet quality controls and are followed by the organizations as they branch out and start their own careers such as growing pineapples or herbs and working in restaurants.
“It is amazing and all about giving these women — who have suffered terrible atrocities — some dignity and a chance to make something of their lives,” Tolsdorf said. “It is all about giving a hand up to women and making them self-sufficient and teaching them skills. I love the concept and I will continue to give parties.”
In addition to her Boca Grande events, Tolsdorf plans another in Nantucket this year as well as one in her hometown of West Chester, Pa.
Same Sky women start by crocheting glass beads together into bracelets and necklaces. Bead for Life involves making jewelry from recycled paper,
“Both these organizations are huge success stories that are built on home parties,” Tolsdorf said.
Fact BoxSame Sky event
When: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. April 4-5
Where: Johann Fust library
Why: Benefit underprivileged African men and women
Go to: beadforllife.org and samesky.com.