One of the most wonderful parts of being an ex-pat in Paris is that I meet fellow ex-pats from the world over. Other cultures fascinate me and I feel it is such a gift to have the opportunity to meet people who come from all corners of the world and to learn their stories.
When I came to Paris over 13 years ago, it was to learn photography. In my classes, there were students from around the globe studying alongside me. I made a number of lifelong friends during that program - many of them extremely talented artists. One of the students that truly stood out for me, was a young woman named Miki Nitadori. Her art, even then was exceptional and it has bloomed even more since. I have stayed in touch with Miki over the years and one of the many things that is so beautiful about her is that she shares her talents for the good of others.
Miki's work has been featured in galleries around the world which seems to be only natural for someone raised in multiple cultures and countries: Japan, USA (Hawaii), and France. She has an affinity for cultural understanding and perhaps thanks to this quality she is a very open and giving person. Through her art, Miki has worked on various charitable projects and one that she has been deeply touched by is the one she is currently undertaking: Combat for Tohoku people.
Deeply disturbed by the tragedies in Japan, Miki decided to do something to help. She therefore launched a mission to assist through her photography series entitled: Combat. She chose to put her sought after artwork online and allow people to offer a donation in exchange for the print itself or for the print to go to the people in the affected areas. She began this effort five days after the natural disasters in Japan and it has been a great success both in support for the people of Japan and also on a personal level for Miki.
She wrote on her blog on April 3rd, "This experience of donating my works and people buying pieces from this series, I am experiencing something that is important. If I resume this experience in one word, it is "Trust". Trust in my action, my feeling, my thoughts, my instinct and who I am. In other times, when people bought my work, they trusted my work but reasons and goals varied. As this moment, I have never felt this strong sense of collaboration with people who bought my work. We are taking a common action together through this series. We know that this action is important as we are deeply touched by what is going on in Tohoku."
How wonderful is it that when we help others we can't help but uplift ourselves as well? This is something that we as spirited women already know though, isn't it? What fabulous action could you take today to help someone else? Perhaps by supporting Miki's generous actions or through helping to establish a Spirited Woman Foundation with a prayer scarf purchase or maybe it is something as simple as telling someone you care about how glad you are that they are in your life. It is through these acts of kindness, support and generosity that we become the change we want to see in the world.
Oh la la, our American in Paris is back. A member of our original Spirited Woman Blogger Team, Dawn Z Bournand is passionate about empowering women worldwide to Live their Lives on Purpose. Founder and Director of Fabulously Successful she is an award-winning presenter, author and entrepreneur with a mission to help women live lives of inner and outer Fabulous Success. Dawn lives in the suburbs of Paris, France with her husband and three young boys (the lights of her life) and is currently creating a new group coaching program.