Our Management Team
Darlene Runaldue is taking over the reins of Woven Grace. She is currently on staff at Grace United Methodist in Manassas, and the store owner of the Fair Trade store, Scatter Seeds. She works with seamstresses in Haiti on the island of Gonave, and is looking forward to learning all the ins and outs of the wholesale side. She is single with a grown daughter and grandchildren.
During our first mission trip to Source- á -Philippe, Haiti, in 2012, we met with the women in the village. One of the first questions we asked was, “What do you need?” Their unanimous reply: “We want to work. We want to learn to sew.” Their sincere desire to learn, and their boldness in wanting to start a sewing business, was the impetus for us to help them help themselves. With much planning and some serious ingenuity—thanks to dear friend Nancy Reames and our dedicated team, we helped start a sewing group in Haiti. And, from that initial launch, came the inspiration for our brick and mortar, Fair Trade store, Scatter Seeds, located in the heart of historic Old Town Manassas, Virginia.
Through watching the hard work of these women and other adults like them, we have learned the value of meaningful and sustainable work. If employed and earning a fair and living wage, individuals and families not only survive; they thrive. Parents can afford food, health care, clothing and an education for their children. In countries where a large percentage of the population lives in abject poverty with little or no electricity, no running water, and few opportunities for the marginalized, having a means to generate an income is extremely important.
More recently, we were praying and asking for a way to generate steady income for our seamstresses and for others in the village. Jeanne Allen contacted me to talk about whether I had an interest in working with her on Woven Grace and eventually taking the reins. It was an answer to prayer! Last Wednesday, March 13th, we signed papers and have begun training. I am excited to have the same heart for the people of Haiti and offer the cards, journals, key chains and other products, continuing the work to give women and teens hope.