Two years ago, Dr. Kerry Reeves and wife Joy left behind the comforts of their Conover home and moved into an orphanage in Haiti, as they expanded New Vision Ministries into a full-time
Some of the many services they provide for the Haitian people include vision care, business
mentoring programs for fisherman and a sponsorship program for children, which involves a sponsor paying for a year's worth of education.
In Haiti, there is no such thing as public education and according to UNICEF, roughly 50 percent of their children never step foot in a classroom.
Ten years ago, a woman in Newton, started making and selling soap at small festivals and farmers markets. This year marks "My Soaps" 10th anniversary of providing artisan quality soaps, bath and body products and heat therapy pillows. As part of their year-long celebration, they will donate $1 for each soap sold baring the "Soap for Hope" insignia directly to New Vision Ministries' education sponsorship program.
"We hope to be able to provide at least one child with a year of education," said owner Dorothy Samson. "We also want to encourage our customers to consider how they can be involved with the Reeves' ministry."
Each month, a different soap will be chosen to bear the "Soap for Hope" label. Customers may purchase the "Soap for Hope" online or at the farmers markets in downtown Hickory Farmers Market and the Charlotte Farmers Market off of Yorkmont Road. The "Soap for Hope" program starts Saturday and lasts through the end of the year.
Samson, her husband Jim, and their daughter Jennifer make more than 40 varieties of handmade soap in their Newton workshop. Starting slow and steady, their product line has grown significantly and is all created in house. Jim is the master soapmaker and has recently commissioned a local woodworker to build larger molds to accommodate the increasing demand for soap. Samson researches and creates the recipes and patterns of their different heating pad pillows and lavender products and does all the sewing. Jennifer is a graphic artist and has created custom labels for the products including each of the soaps using her whimsical drawings.
The family business has big plans for the year starting with the "Soap for Hope" program, a contest giving 10 winners soap for a year, a birthday celebration at the farmers market in August and more.
For more information about "My Soap!"call (828) 466-2271 or visit www.omysoap.com . For additional information regarding Reeves and New Vision Ministries, go to their website at