BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—WorldCrafts, the fair-trade division of national Woman’s Missionary Union, is partnering with Mully Children’s Family, a nonprofit organization in Kenya that seeks to transform the lives of street children and youth living in poverty.
In the process of promoting Mully, a movie about the life of Charles Mulli and his vision of “changing the world one child at a time,” the fair-trade enterprise also hopes to expand WorldCrafts’ impact among impoverished artisan groups globally.
The different spelling of the individual’s name and the name of the nonprofit organization and the movie is intentional.
Charles and Esther Mulli devote their lives to caring for children
Mulli was the firstborn in a family of eight, living in poverty in Kenya. At age 6, his parents abandoned him when they left in search of a better living. He grew up begging on the streets and became a Christian as a teenager.
When Mulli was 17, he walked more than 40 miles to Nairobi to seek employment. He found work and met his future wife, Esther. He became a wealthy entrepreneur and respected community leader, and the couple had eight biological children.
In 1989, Mulli felt God laid it on his heart to help other children living in poverty in Africa. He sold all his property and businesses in order to provide street children in Africa with shelter, medical care, education and more. Since then, Charles and Esther Mulli have taken guardianship of more than 12,000 abandoned children.
Natural fit for WMU
“We are delighted to be a part of sharing this life-changing story about how one man’s obedience to God has transformed a nation,” said Sandy Wisdom-Martin, executive director of national WMU.
“Beyond a gripping storyline, watching this movie will inspire Southern Baptists to examine ways God is calling them to personally serve and minister to others.”
Wisdom-Martin describes this project as a natural fit with WMU’s vision of challenging Christian believers to understand and be radically involved in the mission of God and WMU’s existing ministries.
“This partnership will bring more visibility and support for WorldCrafts’ artisan groups in poverty and coming out of sex trafficking so we can minister to exponentially more artisans and their families,” Wisdom-Martin said. “It will also underscore the kingdom impact Christians can make through orphan care and adoption.”
Mully will be shown in about 800 theaters around the country Oct. 3–5. See locations and purchase tickets here after June 23.
Churches interested in scheduling a pre-theatrical showing of the movie between June 25 and Sept. 24 can request more information here.
World Crafts also has developed a host kit for congregations, small groups and families, as well as a viewer kit for individuals.
WorldCrafts markets artisans’ handiwork
Mully Children’s Family operates six facilities in Kenya. One location, the Yatta Vocational Training School, employs artisans who are young, impoverished women seeking to rebuild their lives after being trafficked.
“When we learned more about how the Yatta Vocational Training School helps young women out of trafficking and teaches them skills such as sewing and making jewelry, we knew we wanted to invite them to be an artisan group of WorldCrafts,” Wisdom-Martin said.
WMU wanted to help them market the necklaces and purses they create, but upfront funding to place a significant order was going to be a challenge, she noted.
“We prayed, and God provided $115,000 through the WMU Foundation so we could increase our orders not only to this group, but also to other WorldCrafts artisan groups,” Wisdom-Martin said. “We are so grateful for the WMU Foundation and generous donors that made this possible so quickly.”
Sylvia DeLoach of Richardson, who also serves on the WMU Foundation board, saw the value in the Mully project.
“The Mully partnership struck a chord in me from the first time I heard about it. What a perfect opportunity to partner with a project that’s meeting needs and providing opportunities congruent with WMU’s ongoing purpose,” she said.