Announcing the Adopt a Village in Laos T-shirt

Posted by on June 26, 2011 in Asia, cause marketing, charity, Education, PR+Social Media

At the beginning of the week, I submitted my designs for an Adopt a Village in Laos T-shirt to Has Marketing, which focuses exclusively on designing and producing promotional products from buttons to tees. A couple of days after the initial submission and some tweaking, the finalized designs were emailed on the morning of June 22. Later that same day I received the proofs, which revealed how the designs will look on the shirt itself. After careful consideration and feedback from others, I settled on what colour I wanted for the shirt: forest green.

The front of the shirt sports the organization name, its focus, and the web site. The O’s in Adopt a Village in Laos have been transformed into baci strings, which are an integral element of hill tribe culture and basically represent good fortune. The back of the shirt is adorned with Lao script and the translation, which appears directly below it, expresses what this organization represents.

On the morning of June 23, I ventured to Has Marketing and  finalized the order by putting down a fifty percent deposit. For this initial order, which will take about a week, I am only producing 20 shirts to see what the response will be from people first. Three of the shirts will be written off for me and the organization founders, Steve Rutledge and Mike Yap. The remaining 17 shirts will be available for sale starting on July 10, with the proceeds going back to the organization to help fund its various projects.


It is said that a journey begins with a single step. On Tuesday, July 7, 2010 my journey to Laos began when I met Mike Yap, who introduced me to the Adopt a Village project. Having always been fascinated by other cultures, I was immediately captivated by the concept. In mid-August I visited Port Hope, where Mike and Steve Rutledge, who is the other half of the driving force behind this humanitarian effort, reside. That weekend I listened to Steve talk with great enthusiasm about their work. I became more and more intrigued. On Canadian Thanksgiving weekend, I visited them again. That Saturday night I had the honour of attending their presentation/fundraiser for the Adopt a Village in Laos project at the beautifully restored Capitol Theatre in downtown Port Hope, Ontario. Having never had their presentation/fundraisers captured on video before, I volunteered to record this event with my iPhone. When I returned home, I would edit it and then upload it to YouTube in hopes of raising awareness of their work to a larger audience. From that weekend I came away glowing inside with a wonderfully positive energy. Inspired, I made a commitment to myself and to Mike and Steve that I would help them with their endeavours. Since that time, I haven't disappointed. Please visit my personal blog, My Journey to Laos, at to see how I have been trying to help them raise awareness for their cause. Ultimately, I will go to Laos and experience for myself all the great work which they have done and continue to do.

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