I recently selected Veritas Medieval Faire as Butterfly Sundries’ newest Featured Charity and I want to tell you why this particular charity event is so very close to my heart. I chose this event because it offers something good, something honorable… and maybe even something compassionate to the residents of Grant County, Washington.
Both Veritas Medieval Faire’s parent non-profit, Kron, and my own business office were victims of multiple thefts during our respective years in Moses Lake, WA; as we shared building space, we both suffered substantial losses simultaneously.
In the case of Kron, the thefts included replica swords used in programming, blunt training weapons used in their educational videos on medieval combat, armour on loan to the organization from their Executive Director, a handcart to make transportation easier, an amp used for the program’s microphone system, a Bluetooth car stereo donated for the org’s vehicle to make long car rides safer and more enjoyable, and more… items used in the service of others, most of which the organization has still not been able to replace.
In the case of Butterfly Sundries, I lost a smartphone, (all but 4 cups from) my Gramma’s Depression-era china set which I was using to inspire a new jewelry line (some of the few items of hers I was able to keep as most were given to other family members), a laptop computer, memory cards for my camera, a welding/torch set for a jewelry expansion, a CASIO keyboard, and more…. None of which have I been able to replace.
As some of the building space was offered to staff or volunteers for free storage, there were personal losses as well… including childhood collector’s items or toys, DVDs, etc.
The losses were heartbreaking. I still feel violated by the intrusion and have dreams related to it. Despite a number of wonderful people I met in the area, my personal experiences and memories are tainted by the sadness I feel.
It was with a certain amount of surprise I heard that Kron intended, last year, to bring Veritas Medieval Faire to Grant County, Washington. After the crimes they had been victim to in that area I wouldn’t have blamed them if they had written off the area after relocating to Ellensburg, WA. Instead, they decided to respond to their experiences, as well as the crime and gang rates associated with Grant County, by offering an event which centers on the culture of the knight, a warrior in his own time, with the Code of Chivalry as the central focus. They decided to offer an alternative to the crime and gang culture still-associated with that area by bringing engaging educational opportunities and programs to an area which might not otherwise have access to enrichment activities. I want to support them in that quest.
For my part, I want something good to come out of my negative experiences in Moses Lake and Grant County. The crimes to which I fell victim hurt my heart and my business- but if I can take that negativity and turn it into something good, perhaps I can create new meaning from the losses. The thefts made me aware of the horrible problems Grant County still needs to work on, but if my awareness does not move me to action it is valueless. I’m turning it into motivation to help a non-profit do good work in an area I know needs it. If the Code of Chivalry makes a difference in the life of at least one child or helps even one youth reconsider what it can mean to be a warrior and gives them an alternative code to use of character building… I’ll count it as a success and the losses worth it.
The life of even just one is worth far more than the material losses I suffered… and I am grateful to Kron for reminding me of that with their Veritas Medieval Faire.