An Open Letter to Social Good Businesses


Reframing How Social Good Businesses Think

Business culture as we know it is fundamentally shifting. Numbered are the days for businesses who seek to maximize bottom line profits exclusively and at the expense of all else. Not only are customers more aware of their purchasing decisions, but employees are becoming increasingly vocal about desiring purpose and goodwill in their chosen vocations. As Bob Dylan famously sang, “Times they are a changin’.”

A new breed of organizationhas burst onto the scene to act as the counterbalance. The new kid on the block is waving the “social good” flag and finding ways to leverage everything from supply chain to earnings to create all types of positive impact in the world. And some of these businesses are earnestly doing a good job at striking the balance of profit and purpose.

I do have one major qualm with the booming trend in social good businesses, however, and that is their exclusivity. This isn’t a new concept, as we’ve seen it play out in serious ways throughout the non-profit sector, but one thing we must be aware of is how far we are willing to hold hostage the goodwill our work is accomplishing so that we can be differentiated in the marketplace. Let me explain…

10 years ago my friends and I set out to provide meaningful work to war-affected mothers in Northern Uganda. We taught a small group of women how to make headwear, we started a brand, and we worked to educate customers about the positive impact their purchases had. Our unique take on our product and how we proved the “social good” of our work was to have the makers sign each completed piece, so our customer could come to learn about the specific person who made their product.

Fast forward a few years and our brand had some great success, we expanded our product offering and started a second location in Peru, but the concept for a consumer to know WHO made their product was still very isolated. We were one small brand trying to shift an industry on our own. It became clear that we were limiting the impact of our work, by holding onto it too tightly.

Truly, if we are honest with ourselves, isn’t the point of leveraging business principles to generate goodwill for people and the planet something we all should be doing? Don’t we all win if more businesses are weaving positive values into their business operations? Then why do we insist on setting ourselves apart to tout our brand as THE social good solution? 

That’s why we started KNOWN SUPPLY. To take this concept — this alternative way of viewing your clothing by having a human story attached to it — and give it away to all those who share our value system. Then, as more of us choose to put people first through our clothing purchases, more people will be exposed to this fresh alternative. And our mission will be accomplished at significantly greater scale.

Social good in business is an incredible movement that is taking place in our present age. My encouragement is to not squelch it by holding on too tightly to the thing that you feel differentiates your brand, because in doing so you may be in contradiction to the cause you set out to accomplish: to help the most people possible. While we’re extremely proud of our social impact, we (collectively) need to be looking for ways to build bridges and engage the rest of the business community in that very work.

(This post was originally shared on the Known Supply blog.) 



Let’s get real. Every week we open up our social apps and take a quick look at how many people are following us. We check the project account, personal account and business account. When we meet a new person, we check out their profile and quickly determine their level of influence based on the number that it says. Influence has become a number and we instinctively quantify our own and others with just a few clicks and searches. These little numbers are impacting who we think is important (including ourselves).

This is the new precedence that permeates our culture. Rising and falling. Up and Down. Known or unknown. Influence has become defined by the platform we control. Platforms are usually defined by quantity. There is always someone with a platform with more people than me or you. Which leads to this question: Is our value truly determined by the quantity of our followers?

This is the first time in history that every person could quantify their following and if you are like me, sometimes you wonder if this is good progress. These so called ‘levels’ of influence are driving much of our behavior. You are either at the top or you are looking up trying to get ‘there.’ We instinctively know more followers results in more attention. We make choices based on the quantity of reviews and the collective agreement of ratings. We pay money to boost exposure, followers, and reviews with the hope of a larger platform. And on a daily basis, we fuel the hype through our behavioral decisions.

So, on a personal level, why do we do this and why do we care? The problem is personal. We want to be seen and to be known. We want to be seen with people that are known.

What if we changed our view of the platform. What if a platform is only as important as how we use it. What if we valued a platform not by how many are watching, but by our intentionality and purpose?

I was crafting the message, stage, experience and content for a massive event, literally 14,000 people were listening. I chose to leave it all. It was an influential platform and shaping many thinkers in a specific audience. But I chose to leave. I remember getting messages from people trying to understand why? What I have found is that if I can help one person find why they exist, the exponential return is much greater than the platform I once influenced. When I give intention to the life of one person, it will always have a greater return than the appearance of a thousand.

We all have the ability to shape small circles that are around us everyday, this is what changes the world. The table where you are eating dinner. The family you are parenting. The marriage to your best friend. The team that you lead. The class that you teach. The program you run. The person you know through carpool. If those closest to you don’t feel your intentional love, encouragement and pursuit of their purpose - then your focus is probably only based on appearance. Appearance is no platform at all.

Now, what if you are leading an organization, one where you need more people to know the problem you are solving? This is the strategy that I have found for increasing your platform for your problem: make progress on the problem. Tell stories of people impacted by the progress. Solve the problem. Whenever you are making a true difference, your name will become known and it will be much more intentional.

Platforms are not bad if used with intention and not for attention. I recently learned a great lesson in conversation with Lecrae, a pioneer in much of his music career with a quantitatively large platform. He mentioned something I will never forget. “I want my ceiling to be the floor for others.” This simple thought is one of the greatest I have heard about platforms. When we build a platform for ourselves, its all about appearance. When we lift up the dreams of others, it’s all about intentionality. When we build a platform for the sake of others, it gives reason to quantity.

A platform is only as good as how you use it. Whether your platform is five or five thousand, you have the ability to help shape the purpose of others through it.

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#Plywords on Ideation :: Idea Implementation as Freedom :: DOMINIQUE HOWSE

The formation of thoughts and ideas can come easy to marginalized groups, because when boxed into corners, and, or forced into spaces of discomfort, the choice to create, and innovate is indecision; somewhat of an unspoken organic nature that is sustained by the desire to survive — to live a better life — to beat opposition — to overcome “the struggle”. Therefore, innovation and idea generation have always been (and still are) mandatory for many of us. And arguably, when the two concepts merge, they tend to feel more biological than “social reaction”. 

Amongst the many things that inspire and motivate me to do, there are equally just as many barricades to duck under, glass ceiling to shatter, and red tape to dismantle. Long before I had the language: “racial economic disparity”, “gender oppression”, “white supremacy” and “institutionalized racism”, I felt the definitions living and breathing inside of my community, throughout my schools, and within my world… every play in my book had to be about (not just) creating alternatives and solutions for some of the world’s most pressing issues, but intentionally fighting through systems of bias. My ideas have never had the privilege of just being ideas, alone. There has always been a consideration for someone, something, and somewhere outside of, and aside from, myself. 

I have never had the privilege or space to "just do it” — but we clearly created NIKE content and platforms time and time again…

So taking an idea from just an idea into implementation while fitting the profile of Sandra Bland is something else; and, or when your nephews dress like Trayvon Martin; and, or your parents are survivors of decades of racist policies and social constructs, that left them no choice but be public displays of victory, it becomes challenging to be…

And so, I don’t think this is an excuse, but more of an explanation as to why the Howse of Innovation has been a buried pot of gold, and yet, at the same time, the reason the Howse of Innovation - #ATL is happening this Spring…

Frankly, I woke up one day, and realized that my entire narrative is full of the same Spirit that led to Jazz as a genre; the organization of the Underground Railroad; the foundation for Jame’s Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time; and Tupac Amaru’s “Me Against the World” — at some point, my creation became what the Book of James outlines as “a walk of faith.” My work is a direct output of God’s vision for me. When I began to look at my work as a spiritual commitment that led to life, and liberation, my efforts shifted…

So, cheers to the abundant amount of discomfort that once stood as distraction, that thankfully and currently, are deemed as drivers for the Doer. 

'Driva Man’ and friends, we are here…

- Free’Dom



Dominque Howse is a recent Atlanta implant, and an award-winning social innovator and changemaker dedicated to generating social impact through highlighting the relationship between People Power and policy change. Howse holds an Executive MBA from Fisher College of Business at The Ohio State University, a M.S. in Urban Policy Analysis and Management from The New School, and a B.A. in Mass Communication from Jackson State University. With a professional background spanning across the United States and the Global South, her highlighted experience includes notable work in both public and private sectors; in education policy and practice, executive leadership, youth development, women's empowerment, lifestyle journalism and international community development

#Plywords on Ideation :: 3 Unspoken Truths About Generating New Ideas :: KEVIN JENNINGS

“You’re an idea guy.”

I’ve heard this statement for years now. It’s been used as both a sincere and backhanded compliment. As a result, I ran from the title ‘dreamer,’ but the truth is, I am one. In fact, when I was in college, one of my favorite social activities was to brainstorm ideas of potential businesses and nonprofits with friends. Then, we’d write each idea in notebooks I still have today.

Over time, I’ve encountered these three unspoken truths about generating ideas:

1. Ideation is an act, not a skill. It’s the sum of multiple skills.

Ideation is more like driving a car than it is lightning striking. Driving requires hand-eye coordination, motor skills, eyesight, knowledge of how to operate a vehicle, awareness of other vehicles, road signs, etc. Driving is the act of combining and using those skills to operate a car. Similarly, ideation is the composite of various soft skills:

  • Emotional intelligence

  • Self-awareness

  • Critical thinking

  • Problem solving

  • Empathy

  • Communication (which contains its own subset of skills such as listening, writing, body language, verbal communication,and physical communication)

Make ideation a muscle that operates from memory.

2. Ideation reveals the heart of the ideator.

Creativity was missing from the list. Why? By definition, creativity is the ability to create, which we all possess. Therefore, 1) we’re all creative and 2) creativity isn’t a roadblock to ideation. However, our belief in our creativity is.

It’s difficult for the mind to explore what the heart sees as impossibilities. Consequently, our limiting beliefs — insecurities, fears, lack of self-esteem — are the true roadblocks. I imagine a significant portion of us ideate in group settings, which typically further exposes and/or amplifies those same roadblocks.

What are we to make of this? Ideation is deeply personal. Our commitment to overcome ourselves and provide grace to others (when their issues surface) is a key to ideation.

3. Ideation is not innovation.

Novelty characterizes innovation. As Jason Dyba, the creative project manager for Passion Conferences, recently told me, “Ideation under the pressure of innovation is unnecessary.” It’s true. We often hunt for the new when better will do.

Better matters because life matters. Life is measured by the quality of our experiences, relationships, and contributions. Let’s create better quality experiences, relationships, and contributions for ourselves and others.

Ideation is a gateway to better.



#Plwords on Ideation :: Karyl Morin

Plywords on IDEATION by Karyl Morin

The future has to be imagined before it is created.  

How’s your imagination doing?  Awesome, Good, Fair, Barely There, Horrible.  Are you brave enough to avoid being consumed by maintaining and responding to prioritize breakthrough ideas, creativity and divergent thinking?  Better is possible.  No doubt, but first we must imagine what that better is.


It’s a word I love.  It’s a space I feel most at home within.  Some feel at home there, others prefer more convergent thinking.  Either way - we all need imagination time to fuel ideation.  The capacity for or act of forming or entertaining ideas.  

CREATIVE CAPITAL.  How’s yours?  Creative Capital is the capacity of a person, family or community to imagine and express new possibilities through creative activity.  This is a personal and civic asset that increases the effectiveness of individuals, the strength of families and the health of communities.  It is our imagination and original ideas applied toward a current need.


Here’s 4 practical ideas to fuel ideation:  1)  Listening and fresh eyes.  2) Leaving your typical surroundings and distractions.  3) Being with a diverse, enthusiastic group.  4)  Ditching the technology.  


Whether you are brainstorming solutions for talent recruit, addressing homelessness, or changing difficult transitions with a child, empathy is the place to begin.  Have you really listened to the person your organization is seeking to serve?  Have you asked your customers for direct feedback?  Do you have perspective other than your own.  Listening and empathy are the best fuel for productive ideation.  

Sister Corita Kent is a hero of mine, a bold artist and activist in the 60s who shared this rule:  “Don’t try to create and analyze at the same time.  They’re different processes.”  

Whether you are working alone or as a team, begin with divergent thinking before you switch gears to converge on an idea to move forward into prototyping.  Often times the most outlandish ideas, which might seem logical to rule out, will lead to a remarkably on point solution.  So don’t be THAT person that shuts down creative ideas in a meeting - just entertain ideas, humor the process, silence your hyper-responsible logic.  Give ideation it’s own space rather than gearing up the logic and shutting creativity down.

This is your world.  Create it or someone else will.

What if we?  Creativity and collaboration are at the core of who I am.  And yet, I still find myself pulled away from ideation and towards implementation. Why do we busy ourselves and leave aside our creative capital? Leaving out creativity, ideation and divergent thinking will prevent the breakthroughs, solutions and boldness we need for a better future.  


Karyl has creatively pursued talent development of youth for 20+ years with a collaborative spirit and a bent toward innovation.  She is a systems thinker, passionate about empowering individuals and organizations to discover and pursue their unique contribution to the world.  


#Plywords on Ideation :: KIMBERLY DANIEL

The spaces I help to create are never short of imaginative, innovative leaders who are full of ideas. These individuals are what I call “idea lovers.” But within this generative group of idea lovers, is a smaller subset of idea makers. Charles Lee, CEO of IDEATION shares, “…not all idea lovers make ideas come to life. Unlike idea lovers, idea makers are not satisfied with just having a great idea. They are committed to seeing their concepts actualized in the real world.”

As someone invested in my community, I would add that idea makers don’t execute their ideas for their idea sake. Instead, idea makers move their ideas from their imaginations into reality to create a solution for the greater good.

As a team member of DO GOOD X, I’ve journeyed alongside faith-rooted entrepreneurs who want to do good in the world. These entrepreneurs—idea lovers and makers—birth many ideas. But what is needed to help idea lovers turn an idea into a good idea? (We all know that all ideas aren’t necessarily good ideas.) And, how do we create a space that empowers and prepares these idea lovers to be idea makers for social good?

Here are three playful actions I’ve noticed that support these entrepreneurs in becoming idea makers for good.  

TOGETHER, idea makers dance, experiment and challenge.

Remember grade school dances? Peers stood against the wall waiting for the perfect opportunity to share their moves. Or they were scared out of their minds to move. The fun always began when a courageous person decided to get on the dance floor. And it became a party when others joined.

Idea makers thrive when they have a space to DANCE with other idea people. Last year, I experienced a group of 10 social entrepreneurs sourcing financial support, partnerships, product development, potential mentors and prospective investors just among themselves. This is the power of what can happen when you don’t hold the wall and you’re courageous enough to dance with others.

I’ve seen committed people test out their idea of a dance routine, wait for the crowd to respond and refine their moves based on reactions. Because the only way to be confident that an idea is a viable solution is to EXPERIMENT and prove it is a possible solution. Prototype, experiment and refine. Having the ability to experiment and fail soft in the midst of supportive, but honest peers is invaluable. Remember, most entrepreneurs succeed because of wisdom that surfaces through failure.

Varying levels of experienced dancers challenge themselves and others to do better. Idea makers need spaces to be challenged and to CHALLENGE one another. Is your idea ethical? Does your idea actually solve a problem? Are you “the one” to actually bring a particular idea to life? It’s through these types of questions from others that idea makers learn from alternative perspectives, innovation occurs and they think deeply about their commitment to their idea.

I prefaced this list with the word “together.” And that might be one of the most important elements to remember. An African Proverb says, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

So, dance and play with your ideas in community. Challenge yourself and other idea makers. It’s within conversation, collaboration and community with others that you and your idea will thrive…for the long run.


#Plywords on Ideation :: CHARLES LEE

Ideation isn’t satisfied with ideas alone. It seeks to create clarity and a pathway for actualization. It also cares enough to invest time and resources necessary to implement well. Ideation may embrace lean, but it doesn’t compromise mission.

Ideation can be both exciting and scary. It can stay surface and non-threatening or it can challenge us to question whether it’s even worth it. Ideation can provide life-shaping insights that change our future trajectory or sober us with reality that kills the “brilliant” idea we once thought we had.

Are you ready for this? I want to believe you are since you’re still reading this!

While there is no perfect way to ideate, the following is a helpful process that we’ve used and refined over the years while working with numerous brands in multiple industries that were committed to moving their ideas to execution. Please feel free to take some or all of the process/principles to create momentum around your ideas.

  1. Frame the Challenge – Taking time to articulate, document, and frame what the challenge you’re seeking to solve for is foundational but often overlooked. Jumping to a solution before understanding the context of the problem is premature. Ask yourself questions like “What is the real problem we’re trying to solve?” or “What is the real job to be done?”

  2. See the Unseen – All of us are driven by presuppositions and assumptions about our ideas. It is important to take time to identify some of these before working towards solutions. One of the ways to uncover biases may be to bring in others who think well, but don’t work in our space day to day. Allow them to ask “basic” clarifying questions about your mission and business model. You may also want to proactively go to events outside of your industry to see how others solve problems.

  3. Diverge Away – The main goal of this element in our process is to generate lots of diverging ideas. Yes, go ahead and write down all of the crazy thoughts you and your team have on potential solutions. Make it a rule at this point to never say “no” to any idea. Keep the time limited and go at it!

  4. Converge – Once you and your team have a ton of ideas, it’s time to converge through design thinking. The main objectives are to (1) identify common threads of thinking, (2) build upon each other’s ideas with clarify questions and/or by connecting existing ideas, and (3) vote as a team for one or two ideas that are desirable, feasible, and viable (i.e., Does it make business sense?).

  5. Prototype – One of the most practical ways to test out a solution is to prototype it. This doesn’t have to be an elaborate endeavor. Whether the prototype is digital, physical, or done through role playing (e.g., customer experience), the main goal is to uncover new insights that often only come once a prototype is in place. A good prototype, whether done internally or with existing customers, will force idea refinement and iteration.  

  6. Iterate Forward – Creating a culture committed to experimentation and iteration will continue to foster and accelerate innovation. It will take a few cycles to get a process going so stay patient and keep iterating forward.

As you work through this or any other ideation process, I’d recommend that you find someone who can help facilitate this work and keep you on track to implementation. Investing time and resources in ideation can increase and accelerate innovation while keeping you focused on the mission of your business or organization.

Dream Big. Start Small. Keep Moving.


Charles is the Founder & CEO at Ideation, an idea-making company that specializes in helping brands scale their business by effectively integrating their strategic plans into day-to-day implementation. He is also the author of Good Idea. Now What?: How to Move Ideas to Execution, a practical book designed to help people move ideas to implementation.



Ideation is the act of forming ideas. Its main purpose is to move ideas from conception to implementation.

#PlyWords on Justice from Jasmine Crowe

"Justice is when the law is applied according to way it was written, as the law is written to help  people on both sides of a case. As I sit and think about this more, sometimes justice is not when the offender is given a life sentence for a crime that they have committed, but it is when the person who has committed the crime gets the help he/she needs so that they won't commit that crime again.

I think that it's an injustice that tonight 42 million people are going to go to bed hungry including 13 million children and seven million seniors. All of this while we waste 72 billion pounds of good food every year. No one should ever have to decide if food is a necessity in their household, food should be a basic right, and Goodr is working to solve this problem.

In today's society people believe that justice is when the offender gets what they have coming to them. But true justice is about helping both the victim, victim's family or even the offender  heal the hurt. Too often justice is one-sided and not equal as it relates to race and class; it's simply unjust. True justice is something that is intended to help a person. Justice is not only about keeping the law, it is respect for the rights of others, fairness and equality of treatment, the common good; it is honesty and truth in our relationships. A contribution that we can all make is to speak up for what is right, be a voice for the voiceless and ensure that our lawmakers make laws that benefit everyone and not just the elite."

-Jasmine Crowe,


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#Plywords on Justice from Debbie Wells

A personal account from Debbie Wells, Founder of Reaching Beyond Bars:

"On November 14, 2007, my life was forever changed. I received a phone call stating that my 17-year-old son had been involved in a crime that would lead him to prison. Once detained and evaluated, he was diagnosed with having bi-polar and mild personality disorder and sent to serve out his sentence in a mental health prison. Although he faced many challenges while incarcerated, there was no greater challenge than when he walked out of the gates as a free man—he was given a gold envelope with no plan of action, no medication or prescription, no help and little hope. What was supposed to be his second chance, became just another sentence.

Although my son was now in the “free world,” he wasn’t free. He continued to wrestle with his mental illness. He faced many other challenges, such as finding housing, gaining employment, and securing reliable transportation. He feared that he'd never be able to establish a stable environment for he and his daughter.

We were not able to receive any assistance, forcing me to work through the roadblocks on my own.  It was then that I remembered the faces of those around me when I visited my son during his incarceration, realizing that they too, would someday face the same challenges my son had faced. In an attempt to change this harsh reality, Reaching Beyond Bars was created.

The mission of Reaching Beyond Bars is to give both youth and adults returning home the opportunity at a fair and just second chance by providing them with the necessary resources and tools to live a self-sustaining life. With the help of our volunteers, donors, and partnerships, all returning citizens can make real strides towards success.

They say Justice is blind, but is she also deaf.  In my work, the cries of the young, the old, the poor and mentally ill go unheard.  The world does not seem fair while evil still abounds, and so those oppressed petition God to intervene on their behalf.  Justice can hardly be found amongst those charged with ruling our nation with fairness and equity. Instead we seem to be bombarded by the “system” of plea bargaining, overburdened and overpopulated prisons, and an alarming number of wrongful convictions. In America today, data shows that only three percent of those charged with a federal crime will see a jury trial.  In fact, there was no jury trial for my son when they attempted to send him away on a 10-year mandatory sentence.  Where is/was the justice in that?  

In the United States, dozens of 13- and 14-year-old children have been sentenced to life imprisonment with no possibility of parole after being prosecuted as adults. A study by the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) has documented 73 cases where children 13 and 14 years of age have been condemned to death in prison. Almost all of these kids currently lack legal representation and in most of these cases the propriety and constitutionality of their extreme sentences have never been reviewed.   

Some may ask, “What can I do? This is too big for one person.” Trust me, it’s not a one person job.  It will take us all.  Our responsibility as a nation is to act justly which should inspire us to CONSTANTLY speak out against injustice in forums, with friends and family, organizations embedded in this work, social media, etc.  Over criminalization, especially in the US is a liberty issue. Every American should know if they are about to break the law, and have the right to choose not to break it. Because there are so many laws, many of which are so capricious, almost everyone is ignorant of these laws on some level. The laws in most cases, vary from state to state.  For example, my son was 17 and was charged with armed robbery but didn’t have a gun. This charge carries a minimum 10 year sentence because it’s considered one of the Georgia’s “7 Deadly Sins”.  I never remembered my children coming home from school studying such “sins”.  Before there is such harsh sentencing, we citizens should demand such “sins” or “laws” be taught to us, our children, teachers, and other educational institutions. How else are we to know? There is no magic repository listing ALL the laws of the land.  Even if there were, where would one begin given the vast number of them? Most of the time, we don’t know we’ve broken a law until the hand of “injustice” comes crushing down. I’m not advocating we let those who’ve broken the law get away with such things. However, there should be a just, fair, and equitable solution. Most importantly, we MUST get back to the platinum rule which supersedes the golden one and that’s Love as God loved, have mercy when it’s in your power to do otherwise, extend forgiveness daily. This is what justice looks like to me."

Debbie Wells, Reaching Beyond Bars


#Plywords on Justice from Chelsea Sabo

“I care about Justice.” “Social Justice is important to me.” “We need to fight for justice.” Justice is a word that we throw around a lot. A word that we hear in our culture often to describe our social bent and often to make ourselves look socially relevant or to try to prove to others that we aren’t selfish or racist or intolerant. But justice is so much more than a social phrase or a cause or act of awareness.

Justice is the very thing that determines the trajectory of our lives and lives of others around us. And justice is easy to agree with and to promote when it is affecting us positively or when it allows us to point out the flaws of another. But, justice is hard to swallow when we are on the receiving end of a hard outcome. I have been living in the world of child welfare for a few years now, and I can’t tell you the amount of times, I have said things like, “well, that is unjust,” or “I want justice in this case.” And sure, the juvenile court system is hard and frustrating, but can I really say that it was the court system itself that was so unjust? In searching for this answer, among many others, I have had to take a step back and evaluate.

Justice itself is honesty, truth, fairness, and rightness. But, I have also learned that justice is not created or destroyed by the laws that govern it, but rather by those writing, implementing, and interpreting that law. Systems themselves are not flawed, because protocol and procedures can’t carry character like those that implement them can. However, I find that it is easier to blame the system, a party or a group, instead of identifying my personal role in that justice and the roles others play as well.

Doesn’t it seem crazy that a young boy at 14 years old would be brought into the courtroom in shackles for shoplifting (unarmed), be called a delinquent as an excuse for his behavior, and then hear his own mother say she didn’t want him and didn’t care what happened to him? … he was escorted back out of the courtroom to return to jail and wait until someone figured out what to do with him at the Department of Family and Children Services. Doesn’t it seem crazy that the average stay for a child in foster care is 4 years, yet, often services aren’t put in place to help parents or children until they have been in care for 2 years? None of these things seem fair or right. But, there are laws that we use to “Cover our Butts” from lawsuits, and we rely on these laws instead of valuing people. Injustice to put it simply, is when one person’s life is valued over another. And that is never ok.

Adults are not more important than children. The rich are not more important than the poor. One race is not more important than another. And bad choices may define your consequences, but they should never define your value. So, do we really want justice? Are we serious when we say this? Because if we do, then that means that we want right consequences, while still giving equal value to each person. That means we have to change our perception of justice being “getting our own way,” to fighting for everyone to equally get what is best for them as a person. Children in foster care should have justice, which is the right to a loving family, to stability, to education, to doctors, and to safety. But, their biological parents should have justice too, which is their right to good rehab and treatment plans, good doctors, education and medications, jobs, and housing. Bringing big fancy houses and apartments and businesses and shopping to an area is wonderful, but not when it is at the expense of another. Anything that values one over another and pushes out those without resource, merely because of their lack, is unjust. So, if we truly want to see justice, we need to start with ourselves first, and question how we see the world and the privileges we enjoy daily.

-Chelsea Sabo, Founder of


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