a Business as Mission Network:: Turn Good Business and Missions into Great Ministry: Business as Mission From the Front Lines of Guatemala <body><script type="text/javascript"> function setAttributeOnload(object, attribute, val) { if(window.addEventListener) { window.addEventListener('load', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }, false); } else { window.attachEvent('onload', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }); } } </script> <div id="navbar-iframe-container"></div> <script type="text/javascript" src="https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js"></script> <script type="text/javascript"> gapi.load("gapi.iframes:gapi.iframes.style.bubble", function() { if (gapi.iframes && gapi.iframes.getContext) { gapi.iframes.getContext().openChild({ url: 'https://www.blogger.com/navbar.g?targetBlogID\x3d27430628\x26blogName\x3dBusiness+as+Mission+Network::+Turn+Go...\x26publishMode\x3dPUBLISH_MODE_BLOGSPOT\x26navbarType\x3dTAN\x26layoutType\x3dCLASSIC\x26searchRoot\x3dhttp://businessasmission.blogspot.com/search\x26blogLocale\x3den_US\x26v\x3d2\x26homepageUrl\x3dhttp://businessasmission.blogspot.com/\x26vt\x3d6117473324771524729', where: document.getElementById("navbar-iframe-container"), id: "navbar-iframe" }); } }); </script>
Business as Mission Network:: Turn Good Business and Missions into Great MinistryTurn Good Business and Missions into Great Ministry with News, Resources, and Tools from the leading businesss leaders, authors, pastors around the world

Business as Mission From the Front Lines of Guatemala

In the fall of 2009 we started researching mission work that focused on using business as a way to help others. We wanted to share what we have learned as entrepreneurs and partner with others to build businesses that help local communities. Leading up to that time, we left the military in late 2002 and had started a document shredding company with basically nothing. We were blessed and grew the business from scratch. Five years later we started Carolina Records Storage (CRS) and the following year, in 2008, were approached by an international company who wanted to buy our shredding company. After a lot of prayer and meetings, we sold it. We were able to focus on and grow CRS and in a short time w felt comfortable stepping out of the day-to-day operation.

We spent about 18 months researching and traveling to a few different countries to see how we could use business to support local communities and mission work. In June 2011 we left the US and headed to Costa Rica to attend a six-month Spanish language immersion school. While in Costa Rica we started a coffee processing plant with a new friend of ours who is a director of a local mission. This
processing plant buys coffee fruit from local farmers and after we process the fruit, we sell the green coffee bean to coffee roasters. Our Costa Rican team is currently in the middle of our first harvest and we are looking forward to seeing how we do our first year. As planned, the proceeds will be used to help mission work in Costa Rica.

We left Costa Rica in December 2011 and went to Guatemala, which is where we currently live. We came here to research a shoe factory we learned about. This factory makes leather shoes to give to local children in need. We were looking for ways to transition this company from depending on donations to thriving on revenue earned from sales. Over the past 8 months we have streamlined the business and are now exporting our products to the US to a company we started called Market 127. Market 127 is based in Rock Hill, SC and is an online business (www.Market127.com). This business sells hand made Guatemalan sandals, flip flops and purses. We are in the process of growing these businesses and getting our products into the hands of the consumer. As these businesses grow, we will again use portions of the proceeds to support mission work here in Chichicastenango, Guatemala. The factory in Guatemala currently has seven full time employees who make above average wages and work in a safe, clean environment. Two or three times a month we host tours for missionaries serving in this area as well as locals. We are excited about this business and look forward to growing it.

The question a lot of people have is “How do you do what you are doing while having a business in the states?” My answer is simple: We have an incredible team who manages Carolina Records Storage. There is no way we could do what we are doing with out these guys. I can’t express in words how blessed we are to have Chann and the guys hold down the fort while we are here in Guatemala. I travel
home a couple times a year to see everyone but with email, the Internet and a cell phone, we stay in contact regularly. Our storage customers love us and we continue to grow. All in all we are very happy with how things are going.

We have several personal and professional goals. One of our professional goals is to grow the coffee business, the shoe factory and Market 127 to the point that they too can operate like Carolina Records Storage. To us, Carolina Records Storage is an example of when you have great people, great resources and a desire to use your resources for good the sky is the limit.


Labels: , ,

posted by Justin Forman | 10.10.2012 - 5:55 AM

2 Comments:

This is a fantastic vision! I'm in the beginning stages of doing a similar start up for Burmese refugees in Thailand.
commented by Blogger Jimmy McCarty, 4:45 PM  

Justin -- Your story is really interesting! I love the mixture of ingenuity and passion for missions.

I've been asked to help research the idea of Business as Missions to present to our team at Grace Community Church of Tyler, TX. Would you mind sharing your email address with me and if you are able to dialogue about it from your perspective?

From your article it seems that your goal is to go into an area and plant/develop a business that was not in existence before your visit. At this stage, we have only looked at developing a missions staffing agency of sorts (all cerebral right now) that will help those who want to minister in other countries to get set into a job where they will not need to rely upon fundraising organizations.

I don't know if I have adequately described where we are, but I'd love to talk with you in either case.

Thanks.
commented by Anonymous Doug Williams, 1:27 PM  

Add a comment