Frustrated with the outsourcing of American manufacturing jobs, Ryan Clark and Tim Andis founded Liberty Bottleworks. The company makes recycled aluminum bottles locally using mostly US machinery, materials and labor. (Photo by Alex Stonehill)
It was the middle of that dark week before the New Year. Christmas cookies were growing stale in tins on the counter and emails had begun to pile up again.
But the news of a plea for help from a forced labor camp in China cut through my holiday hangover.
The Oregonian reported that a Portland woman had found a note shoved into a Halloween decoration she bought at Kmart. The note, written partially in English, claims to describe conditions in a Chinese government labor camp where the Styrofoam “Totally Ghoul Graveyard Kit” was made.
An ariel view of the new Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI) in South Lake Union. (Photo courtesy MOHAI)
When I woke up New Years Day, I immediately regretted my plans to spend the day in a museum.
It was one of those uncharacteristically sunny winter days in Seattle. The kind where Seattleites crawl out of hibernation and the population of the city suddenly seems to double.
The sun glittered across Lake Union as I walked across the beautiful park that the Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI) now calls home. The museum moved from its original location in Montlake and, after a $60 million renovation, it’s more conveniently located and has space for its over 4 million historical artifacts.
But most importantly, with the move MOHAI has taken the opportunity to completely re-imagine the way Seattle’s story is told.
One by One, a local NGO founded by Heidi Breeze-Harris (right) to fight fistula, is one of a dozen small local organizations being honored today. (Photo courtesy SIF)
“There is something unique about Seattle,” says Michele Frix, Program Officer with the Seattle International Foundation (SIF).
“There’s a special quality here: that giving nature and that great interest in global causes.”
Want proof? Look no further than the 250 women and men filling the Four Seasons Hotel ballroom in downtown Seattle this morning.
They are here for SIF’s third annual Women in the World breakfast, honoring the work being done by local organizations for women around the world.
The breakfast has become SIF’s signature event. This year’s speakers include President of Oxfam America Raymond Offenheiser, Zimbabwean activist Glanis Changachirere, and Guatemala’s first female Attorney General, Dr. Claudia Paz y Paz Bailey, (and the Globalist’s own Sarah Stuteville).
And the highlight is the announcement of seventeen grants worth a combined total of more than $200,000.
Today’s grantee organizations address issues like women’s health, literacy, finance, and leadership training. All are based in Washington; all operate on annual budgets of less than $2 million; and all work in developing countries.
So how do we do it? How does our region continue to lead the way in global aid and development? What’s the secret to these organizations’ success?
My first attempt at chapli kabobs gets the Instagram treatment. (Photo by Brett Konen)
Until recently I knew next to nothing about Afghanistan, except that we’ve been at war there for more than half my lifetime.
From what I saw in the news I envisioned dry, desolate terrain throughout, with militants popping out from rocky outcroppings just long enough to shoot at a nameless target.
I knew this wasn’t accurate, but I didn’t have an alternate vision to replace it with.
So, with a little time on my hands after graduation, I decided to build one.
I could have tackled Afghan history, or economy. But there’s something much more tangible about food. Rather than trusting text to be true, we can see, smell, touch, taste the food in front of us. It’s a primary source in the study of a culture we can’t absorb firsthand.
Madhukar Chebrolum, of Redmond, swings at a pitch with his cricket bat during practice for the NW-iFusionIT team Thursday at Woodinville’s Northshore Sports Complex. (Photo by Colin Diltz/Seattle Times)
Behind a complex of warehouses in Woodinville, in a fluorescent-lit sports complex laid with AstroTurf and strung with netting, there’s a batsman stepping up to the pitch.
I’m at late-night cricket practice for The Moose, the traveling team of The Microsoft Cricket Club. It’s 9:00 on a work night but nobody’s going home anytime soon — they’ve got a national tournament in Florida to prepare for.
“Make sure you’re behind the net,” warns Vishwa Gaddamanugu, the gum-chewing coach. I’m standing alongside the automated pitching machine listening to the rhythm of pop, crack, thump as Gaddamanugu feeds ball after yellow dimpled ball into the machine to meet Vik Kothari’s long paddle-shaped bat.
I’m glad I heeded the warning a few moments later when a ball rings off the metal edge of the cage an inch right of my ear.
It is football season and I’ve made a promise to my Seahawks-loving husband to “really try and get into football” this year.