Editor’s note: Mike & Marianne Pohl hosted a wildly successful Garage Sale for Orphans last October. Check out how they pulled together a community to redeem their excess and bring HOPE to the children of Ferrier Village, Haiti.
Driven by our personal conviction to live out the gospel through our actions, Mike and I periodically ask ourselves “can we do more?”
Prior to October 2013, our support of Help One Now was reflected by child sponsorship and personal advocacy of their mission. Mike and I are both deeply unsettled by social injustice in our world. We hurt for the vulnerable and we completely connect with the mission of Help One Now. The question hit our hearts “can we do more?” The answer was YES. We felt motivated to go beyond our commitment of child sponsorship, and advocacy, and also have a garage sale. Soon after deciding we would have a garage sale, that question again hit my heart. “Can we do more?” And again, the answer was YES.
We have a tight-knit group of amazing friends. Our group is really good at having fun together. We also share a common desire to love God and love others through actions. So Mike and I gathered our friends and shared our idea of having one giant community garage sale to benefit Ferrier Village in Haiti. Immediately, our friends were on board (see I told you they were amazing). I was convinced that the more momentum we could generate behind our sale the bigger impact we would have. The initial planning and implementing process began with a core group of 16 friends. And perhaps the most surprising part for me, was the response that we all individually received when we reached out to friends, co-workers, and neighbors. Once word began to spread about what we were doing, everyone wanted to help. We ended up with a total of 36 families who were involved with our sale! We had numerous people donate items to sell, and others who offered to help work on the sale day. We even had several people who graciously made baked goods for us to sell. Community came together.
Because I personally live by the motto “go big or go home,” we went BIG. I used the GS4O website to assist with some of our planning and marketing efforts. I used the logos provided online to have signs, t-shirts, and pens professionally printed. I made small logo tags for all of the baked goods. I created a Facebook page for our event and our whole group blitzed numerous social media outlets to generate excitement and awareness of our sale. We even reached out to the mayor and he highlighted our garage sale on the city website. I created a presentation board to visually share the mission of Help One Now, and specifically Ferrier Village. We set up a “Free Hot Chocolate” table and displayed our presentation board on this table.
It has repeatedly been my personal experience that when I commit to go BIG on something, God will take my big plan and go EXPONENTIAL with it. We planned hard, worked hard and prayed hard.
And guess what happened…
People showed up and they bought stuff. Our sale was a huge success, by every definition of the word. Money was raised, FUN was had, friendships and community were both enriched, AND the gospel was shared through our actions! Can I get an Amen?! (I’m from the south, so periodically after I share something amazing, I request an amen – play along).
Our next community GS4O is scheduled for May. And the question is already churning in my heart “can we do more?”
Click here for more information on hosting a Garage Sale for Orphans.