Shop once, give twice at Kingston Grandmother Connection online store

“The grannies in Lesotho wear blankets year-round (as do many others, not just grannies), but of course, blankets are even more important during their cold winters,” said Deb Ruse, volunteer with KGC. “These were grannies who were given new blankets by Help Lesotho when they were part of the Grandmother Support Program.” Image via Help Lesotho.

With the holidays approaching, Kingston Grandmother Connection is opening its online store once again.

This will be the third season the Grandmothers have opened the online store, which was a “grand experiment” when they tried out the idea in the fall of 2020 when there were no options to continue their in-person markets.

“The saying ‘shop once, give twice’ truly applies,” said Deb Ruse, a volunteer with the Kingston Grandmother Connection. “All proceeds from the store will be used to help grandmothers in 15 African countries who are raising their orphaned grandchildren, through Help Lesotho and The Stephen Lewis Foundation’s Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign. Both are highly regarded Canadian charities. Funds are used to help the grannies (and their families) with day-to-day necessities, with home repairs, but just as importantly, in programs which support their medical and mental health needs, and provide them with tools to better manage the challenges in their lives.”

Kingston Grandmother Connection (KGC) members are restocking many customer favourites for this sale, as well as offering new seasonal products.

“We have items such as Christmas stockings, ornaments and cards, and table décor, such as placemats and table toppers. Plus, a nice selection of winter items, such as hand-knit mitts and gloves, and felted wool scarves,” Ruse shared. “We like to think that shoppers will find many Christmas gift ideas. We’re also offering Gift Donation Cards, for someone who has everything.”

KGC is helping to make a difference in the lives of the African Grandmothers they support.

“Recently, we were told how one grandmother in Lesotho (caring for 14 dependents) was losing her government benefits because she had no identification papers. She was a former participant in Help Lesotho’s Grandmother Support Program, and she approached them for help,” Ruse said. “Specifically, because of the support Kingston Grandmother Connection has provided, Help Lesotho decided they could help her, and eventually she was able to prove her identity and have her benefits restored.”

One of the African grandmothers who are supported by Help Lesotho. Images via Help Lesotho.

Help support the African grandmothers by making a purchase at the Kingston Grandmother Connection store between Nov. 14 and Dec. 14, 2021. Local pick-up and delivery options are available.

Visit the Kingston Grandmother Connection website to learn more about where your support goes, and how the group helps African grandmothers.

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