My name is Barb and I am a mother, wife and designer. I have 5 children total that need my attention, 1 daughter of my own and 4 step-kids. Currently my step-son and my daughter are living with us but the other 3 are still with their mom. One year ago they lost everything they had in a house fire and have been struggling ever since to regain some speck of what they had. They are homeless, living from couch to couch wherever there is room for the night. The reason they have not come to live with me is because in Pennsylvania, the la is that each child must have their own bed to sleep in. I do not have the room for 5 beds or even bunk beds, my house is just too small. The mother also has had some personal issues that have put a strain on her getting on her feet. So, for now, we do what we can for them, bringing meals and clothes when I am able to afford something extra.
On to me, I am not able to work in the normal sense due to my husband's disability. He suffers from amnesic blackouts that he suffers at random. He also suffers from severe arthritis, PTSD, ADHD and Manic Depressive BI-Polar. Needless to say it is not recommended by his doctors that he is left alone for extended periods of time, prohibiting from holding a normal 9-5 job. I have found a way to bring in a VERY SMALL income selling my designs. I have a small shop on a large company website where I am able to add my designs to their products and then sell them online. I have been doing this now for about a year. The only problem is that I only get 10% of the final sales total. I had a $1000 sale period and after store fees I wound up taking home $89. Obviously, $89 is not going to support my current family of 4 let alone a family of 7. Thankfully, my parents have made sure that our necessary bills are paid, so that we have heat and hot water This is a burden a retired couple in their 70's should not have.
I have looked into renting space locally to open a store selling my own products and that's here I cam up with the number $5000. I can rent space for around $800-$1000 a month and it will be sufficient enough to set up my shop. The next problem I face is where to get the initial first and last months rent and the security deposit. Then, I have to worry about how to get the money to purchase the mug printing and the silk screening machines that are needed to transfer my designs onto the products. I will also obviously need products to sell, which will need to be purchased in bulk in order to have an inventory to open the store with. If I am able to achieve my bottom line of $5000, I will be able to acquire everything listed above and open my store. The reason opening my own store is so important is that all the profits after overhead would belong to my family and as you know the money is needed badly. I already have local customers, who have been buying my products from the website because I am not equipped to make them here at the moment. If they were able to come into my store, browse around and buy the products it would benefit us both. Them because they will get to see the product before they buy it and make and informed decision on their purchase and me, well because the profit would be more then $89 and I will be able to start taking care of my family the way that is needed.
I do understand that the road to being financially sound is still a long one, but I am eager to start the journey. Everyone has to start somewhere and I believe this is my somewhere. I have included just a small sample of my designs and products that I would be selling above in the photos section, so that you can all see what you are investing in. There are hundreds more available and I add new ones almost everyday. Also your donation will not go unrewarded. For every donation made equaling one of the preset denominations, you will receive a free gift as a token of my appreciation and gratitude towards your support and belief in me.
Most of your donations will go towards getting the new store up and running, but a portion of them will go to buying all the kids much needed clothes. In addition to these 2 great causes, a small portion of all proceeds will go to the ASPCA, as I am a strong animal rights activist. By helping me open this store, you will be helping the children have an easier life and allowing them to actually be kids again. They have all been so strong and helpful, growing up faster than they should, from my 14 year old down to my 5 year old and I am afraid they may forget what it's like to just be kids. This store will give them that chance again, YOU will give them that chance again. I have included a few pictures of the children as well, so you can see the faces you will be helping.
Thank you for taking the time to read my story, I know it was quite long. I hope I have done a good job conveying my plight to you and that you are able to see just how important this campaign is for us. Any donation you are able to give is greatly appreciated and will get us that much closer to reaching our goal. Even if you are unable to donate, please share this post with as many people as you can so that we may have the best chance possible at achieving our goal. Happy holidays to everyone, have a safe and happy new year. Hopefully 2016 we ill open the doors to My BE Designs at a physical location!!!