In the Gruno’s Diamonds world, we reflect similar values as our partners at Forevermark Diamonds. Empowering Women. Environmental Responsibility. Natural Habitat Preservation. Giving Back to Communities. Healthcare. Education.
The Purple Flower Foundation originated on a recent trip to Botswana to see firsthand the positive effects diamonds have had on the country and its people. During their visit, the owners of Gruno’s Diamonds, Brent and Kathleen Meade, heard story after story of local people being given job opportunities within the diamond industry. Today, many of these locals are at the forefront of the business, developing leading-edge technology for the entire diamond industry.
In addition to the lasting effect of witnessing the positive local empowerment through training and employment, Brent and Kathleen’s lives were forever changed by two other experiences. The first, a story shared with them by one of their hosts, Garone. She explained that when she was a child, school was taught under a jacaranda tree. Children would come from the surrounding villages each day and meet under the tall, shade-giving tree adorned with beautiful purple flowers. The children would draw in the dirt with sticks to demonstrate their math and language skills. After the teacher approved their work, a straw broom whisked away their answers so they could start the next assignment. Today–in the span of one generation–children are taught in comfortable classrooms with books, boards, and supplies. Outside most school buildings today, a jacaranda tree remains to signify just how far the country and its people have come through the support of the diamond industry.
When Brent and Kathleen visited the new healthcare facilities, they were overwhelmed by the genuine, compassionate care the staff provided to the families being treated. As a nurse practitioner, Kathleen marveled at the amazing HIV advancements. Just ten years prior, locals often attended ten funerals per week. Today, that number has declined drastically to as few as ten per year! Brent and Kathleen were honored to see firsthand, the lifesaving effects the medical advances have had on the people of Botswana and beyond.
These healthcare facility visits led to the second, life-changing experience that led them to create the Purple Flower Foundation. When visiting a remote healthcare facility early one morning, Brent and Kathleen were shocked by the long line of patients waiting outside (before 9am) in the blazing, 100-degree heat and scorching sun. Brent asked the facility manager, “If you could have anything you wanted for your clinic, what would it be?” The answer was simple. Their host replied, “What we could really use is some shade for the people who wait for treatment.”
As they left the clinic and discussed the two most-moving stories of their trip–Garone’s story of the jacaranda tree and the simple need for shade at the clinics–the idea of the Purple Flower Foundation began. The mission of the foundation is to provide benches and shade for patients of Botswana clinics.
Join Brent and Kathleen in their mission to bring comfort to the sick and ailing of Botswana with a tax-deductible donation to the 501c3 Purple Flower Foundation.