We often write and talk about the people we have interviewed for our book, Reboot Your Life, or who have attended our Reboot Your Life Retreats, taking what we call “Volunteering Sabbaticals.”  Many used their sabbaticals to get involved in nonprofits, to travel on social-giving vacations, or to give back in their local communities.  For example, Betsy, an orthopedic surgeon, spent part of her Reboot Break on a month-long medical volunteer project.  She said, “The work of this trip was the reason I went into medicine.”  Our newest book research on the Baby Boomers echoes that sentiment.  Whether it is the Millennials or the Boomers, people are interested in finding ways to help others by donating time or money. Giving back is a national pastime!

Sita Devi Karna, Janakpur Women's Development Center ©Bob Smith

Sita Devi Karna, Janakpur Women’s Development Center  ©Bob Smith

One of the ways we Reboot Partners love to give back is through the Santa Fe International Folk Market (www.folkartmarket.org).  Held the second weekend in July in Santa Fe, New Mexico, it is an amazing event.  Over 150 folk artists from over 60 countries submit their folk art to a jury of experts to be invited to participate in this three-day Market.   The artists take home 90% of their sales to support their families and communities, as well as learning to sell to collectors, museum buyers, retailers, wholesalers, and people who just love their handcrafts.  The Market supports the ability of the artists to maintain and preserve the traditional arts of their culture and country, while enabling them to share their work with the world.

Three years ago, with a small grant, we Reboot Partners along with several other friends created the Mentor to Market program to help educate and train the artists in marketing, retailing, pricing, social media, and other skills to help them become sustainable in their arts.

Catherine Allen at Mentor to Market  ©Jane Bernard

Catherine Allen at Mentor to Market ©Jane Bernard

This year, Catherine Allen is piloting a new hands-on sales coach effort for the artists – Rita Foley is one of the official photographers, and Nancy Bearg and Jaye Smith are mentoring artists from South Africa, Afghanistan, and Cuba.  The Honorable Melanne Verveer, former Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues at the US State Department, will be speaking to the artists and volunteers about the new Alliance for Artisan Enterprise program she started with Secretary Hillary Clinton.

We are thrilled that a number of Reboot Your Life Retreat attendees are joining the over 1500 volunteers this year who make the market possible by helping with everything from putting up booths to counting money to assisting the artists.  Come join us this year or next, and use your time off from work to give back to these extraordinary artists!  Or look for an opportunity near you!