30 Bananas a Day!

Hey there, 30BADers! I hope that you are all enjoying plenty of fruit. (:

As some of you might already know, Costa Rica, although it generally has better conditions than many other Latin American countries, is still a place with profound poverty. There is a huge disparity of income, and about ten percent of families are forced to live on less than $1.25 US dollars a day. Hundreds of thousands of children are living in squalid conditions, and many are forced to help provide income for their families through farming or vending and are therefore unable to attend school. Large numbers of them are orphans or without functional families. Child prostitution, drugs, and gang violence are rampant.

I want to help these communities. I want to make a positive change in the world by helping to teach, feed, and clothe these children. I want to teach their communities about health and nature and science and sustainability. 

I found a non-profit organization, called Cross-Cultural Solutions (link is below), that can help me achieve these goals, as a teenager. They have a teen volunteer abroad program that includes a trip to Orosi, Costa Rica, for one to two weeks (I will take whichever I can afford, if either). This program provides a supervised volunteer experience in which teenage volunteers work together on a chosen project that benefits the community. All funds go to the trip expenses or, in minimal amounts, to the hardworking officials that help to run the program. (For further information, you can visit the link below).

This is not about me; this is not about my cultural experience or something pretty to put on my college applications. This is about the less fortunate community that I would be contributing to. I am hoping, from here, to join the Peace Corp after some amount of university.

To raise funds for this opportunity, I am selling any of my possessions that I can. I wish to live minimally anyway; I've realized this after my time on this lifestyle, anyway.

I am listing a number of items and their pictures below, in the attached files, to sell for this volunteering. I promise that what you see is what you get; I am taking current pictures and adding honest descriptions. Because I can only fit a certain number on this post, I'll be posting more in the comments. ALL money from purchases will go toward the trip. If I am not able to go, I will 100% refund every sent. I will absolutely not take donations. I need to earn this.

Thank you for your time in reading this. Just that means a lot to me. If you would like to buy an item to help, please private message me and we can figure out the method of payment. There is no price on the items because I will take ANY price for it, as long as it at least pays for shipping costs. Bargain with whatever amount that you believe the item to be worth.

A thousand blessings and tons of delicious fruit,

Shannon (age seventeen, Port Charlotte, FL)

http://www.crossculturalsolutions.org/discover-what-you-can-do/teen... 

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The first attachment is a small, slip-lid box made from the (cleansed) pulp of elephant droppings. It was bought for me as a gift, from a small, local shop in Sarasota that buys world artisan goods, fair-trade. So it's absolutely eco-friendly, I'm assuming. It's in great condition, as it has barely been used.

The second was also a gift; a unique scrunchie that was handmade in Thailand. I do not know much more about it than that. It has never been used by me, but has been sitting on my shelf since Christmas.

The third was bought from the same store as mentioned in the first description; it is fair trade. This lizard-with-a-banjo is made out of 100% recycled materials, mainly soda cans.

Here is another three items:

The first is a hand-knitted blanket, made by my Aunt (thank you, Aunt Chris!). Sadly, I find that I don't have much use for it down here in sunny southwest Florida. It has been used, but is not in poor condition at all.

The second is a locally-handmade wooden alligator figure. It looks adorable sitting on a shelf.

The third is a bracelet with a ceramic peace emblem on it. I'm not sure what it's made out of, but it's some sort of coarse twine, like hemp.

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Ceramic Box: a small, antique-looking blue ceramic box. It has a small chip under the lid, but otherwise it looks fine.

Hemp Necklace: A hemp necklace with an artsy piece of glass as a charm.

Tamarind Bracelet: I made this bracelet myself out of tamarind seeds (washed and cleaned, of course) and stretch-string. It best fits larger wrists than mine; it would probably fit a grown male the best.

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African Candles: These were handmade in Africa; they were a gift to me bought from a locally owned store specializing in fair-trade African goods. They are beautiful and still in their plastic wrapping.

Elephant Journal: Like the box listed above, this small notebook is made of all-natural materials, mainly purified elephant crud. Both the paper inside and the cover are made from it.

The Host: this is the book by Stephanie Meyer. It was a great read, much better than her Twilight books. I highly recommend it! I finished it in just two days, and it's a large novel! 

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Eight Minute Meditation: A lightly-used book; for more information, read the cover and back provided. A great way for beginners or people that are considering meditation to help relieve stress, etc.

Hemp Bracelet: a very simple bracelet with a few metallic beads, otherwise made from natural hemp.

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King Leopold's Ghost: this is a historical novel about the infamous King Leopold. It's actually a pretty interesting read. The book is in good condition. See back picture for more information. 

Poinciana Painting: This is an original watercolor is a naturesque painting that was done by a local artisan. It appears to be signed "Morna." The matting is not attached yet, however, and it does not have a formal frame.

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Awww Shannon I'd love to buy something from you to help but I don't have a ton of money and I'm trying to live minimally as well. 
I do have an idea for you to raise money, though. Sell some of the produce you make! :)

Awww, I don't expect you to, of course! :) I'm just trying to see if it's possible that I can even go. They've accepted me, and they've already assured me that my fruity diet is completely feasible--they even have fruit trees on many of their residential centers (where the teens stay). My parents might be able to give me a little if they're super generous, but the whole trip costs around $3500, and I can't get a job until the summer. I have jars of coins, but those are worth maybe $80 all together, at the most (I have a lot of dimes). 

Selling produce sounds like a good idea, but I don't know where I could sell it. It's not legal to do so out in the open without some kind of permit/government approval, and not technically allowed at school. I have a lot of lettuce, a few tomatoes (that we use), and rosemary and cilantro, but that's about it right now, at least until the other plants grow large enough (did I tell you? I sprouted some watermelons! But those are all for me... teehee). 

Paddy's Lament is a novel that depicts the plight of the Irish and their immigration to America in a story-like way. Despite being historical, it's very interesting. The book is in good condition.

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