Sometimes you have to let anger take over, even in the sunshine-and-rainbows world of philanthropy.
The recent Pixar film, "Inside Out," does a magnificent job of teaching audiences that a well-rounded existence requires joy, fear, disgust, anger, and sadness. Without these powerful human emotions, we don't fully experience the world around each of us or connect to the people we love. We may prefer to feel joy, but it is disgust that keeps us clean. Or fear that keeps us safe. Or sadness that leads us to hug our favorite person as hard as we can at the end of a bad day.
But what about anger? What good comes from anger?
It turns out, a lot of good can come from someone who is so angry they just can't sit on the sidelines any longer and watch an unjust world ruin lives.
Just ask Deborah, the woman behind The Potter’s Hands, an organization dedicated to helping victims of sexual trafficking heal and build new lives in a group home setting. Instead of figuring out how to turn off the horrible feelings she had when learning about girls and women in some of the worst life conditions imaginable, she channeled that anger into the drive to create something desperately needed.
It has been a lot of work to raise thousands of dollars and managing the hundreds of tasks associated with a massive construction project… especially for a volunteer new to the world of non-profit organizations. I'm sure there have been moments when it would have easy to walk away.
Fortunately for the rest of us, her anger didn't let her. Neither did her disgust at the living conditions of trafficked women. Or fear for girls who are at risk every day. Or sadness for the women who don't survive and have been so forgotten that there is no one else to grieve for them.
So where is the joy in all of this?
Trust me, it will be immeasurable when The Potter’s Hands is filled with girls realizing the sun is shining on them again and they are safe to go outside an look at a rainbow.
To support Potters' Hands, please visit www.thepottershandsfoundation.org. Sex trafficking impacts girls and women everywhere in the world, including New York State. With your help, they can win the fight against sex trafficking one life at a time.