Playfield Stories is a series of incredible individuals chosen for how they show up in this world. These are people who make it their priority to create a positive impact in their community - they are passionate leaders, influencers, and mentors.
This month we are featuring Bobbi Paidel from Tribe of Lambs, she is the founder of this jewelry brand based out of Calgary, Alberta that raises funds and awareness for HIV positive children in India through their product sales and fundraising events/collaborations.
Tribe of Lambs is a for-purpose jewelry brand that focuses on raising funds and awareness for HIV positive children. We do this primarily through the sale of our jewelry, which is ethically hand-crafted in the same communities where we work with the children. Tribe of Lambs began as a one-off crowdfunding campaign in Northern India to empower artisans through employment while supporting children in need.
Three years later it has evolved into what it is today. About two years ago we really streamlined our products and our cause to maximize impact. The problems surrounding HIV stigma & discrimination in India has now become a cause that's very dear to my heart and the force for continuing on. We also fulfil a major part of our Compassion Projects through fundraising initiatives and donations.
2. Talk to us about the name Tribe of Lambs. What does it mean and symbolize to you?
I often receive questions regarding the name…but for us it really embodies our ethos & mission. The Lambs are representative of the children we work to support…like a lamb. A child on its own is vulnerable and meek but with support, opportunity, love and connection; that child can thrive in the world.
That’s where the Tribe comes in; the Tribe is the community we’ve grown of conscious customers, generous contributors, hard-working artisans and anyone that has helped us on our path. We are stronger together, there is strength in numbers and we’ve experienced first hand the shift that can happen when we collectively step up for what is right and just in the world.
“Serve the needs of many, rather than the profits of few.”
3. What does “for-purpose” mean to you and what are your thoughts on the future of social entrepreneurship?
After reading Adam Brauns, “The Promise of a Pencil”, I was so inspired by his approach to charity & social enterprise. While we are a registered non-profit that's working towards charitable status, the term “non-profit” can often mislead consumers or donors. Although we may not work solely for profits, we do work for a cause, and in order to grow our organization towards our vision, we must sustain ourselves financially.
We choose to do this through the sale of a high quality, ethically crafted product. “People over Profits” is becoming more prevalent in our economies as there is a real shift in consciousness happening in consumer goods. More than ever before, people are mindful of what they eat, how they live, how they dress & recognizing the power of their purchase. It is a very exciting time to be an entrepreneur and I firmly believe that social enterprise will soon be the norm as more businesses of all sizes are accepting the value in social or environmental impact in their models.
4. What advice would you give to a young and creative entrepreneur who is starting a business that is focused on solving a global problem?
Do your research, gain some experience to better understand the cause you’re passionate about, partner with other organizations who you align with. And most importantly, just get out there and do it. There is no amount of time, energy, money or resource that is too small. We often think (myself included) that there’s only value if we make a massive impact on a huge scale, but that is ludicrous! If we all just did our small part, the world would be well on it’s way to healing.
5. Tell us about one lesson that you’ve learned about yourself thus far on this life journey
This journey of the Tribe has been the most humbling, fulfilling & challenging experience of my life. I feel very blessed to be able to face these difficulties that come with a running social startup because I know they will ever compare to the daily stresses children with HIV face in developing countries such as India.
These children are my inspiration and they give me the motivation to carry on each day with joy in my heart. There is so much suffering in the world, I am so blessed to have every opportunity at my fingertips to lessen that. I’ve learned that discipline, compassion and humility is the key to maintaining my ideal state of mind and health.
At times, showing up is the biggest challenge and also allowing myself the freedom to enjoy life, have fun, and follow my intuition. Life is the greatest offering from Mother Nature, and I don’t intend to let it pass me by.
6. What or who are you incredibly grateful for in your life right now and why?
I’m grateful for everyone and every experience, which have all led me up to this moment. Each step leads us to the next, and by remembering that this human experience is fleeting, we will always keep us established in that humble space of gratitude.