Staff and other community members of Project 6IX beneficiary organization, Family Resource Center, in St. Thomas, USVI.
No matter who we are and where we come from, we are all connected by 6 degrees or less.
"Project 6IX is built on the principal that no matter who we are and where we come from, everything we do as an individual has an equal or greater effect on the collective, so we must start holding ourselves accountable to making those effects positive and with the collective in mind. We model our methodology after ecosystems in nature that have proven resiliency time and time again, in spite of interruptions to their wellbeing. When allowed to thrive and heal from trauma (e.g. hurricanes), in harmony with the universe's natural rhythm, these ecosystems have an innate ability to revitalize themselves. Humanity must use this same model to enact sustainable, societal change, both at an individual and collective level."
- Jacqueline Ferrer Xavier, CEO + Founder of M2M Gifts LLC
Meet the Change Agent Startup Behind Project 6IX: St. Thomas Mahogany Tree Initiative
M2M Gifts LLC is a US-based, mom-founded social impact startup that is disrupting and reimagining the way status quo healing organizations do business. The company uses a heart-led but business-fed grassroots methodology called Project 6IX, that engages longstanding, local community actors and non-profit organizations doing work in areas including but not limited to: domestic violence (DV) and intimate partner violence (IPV), abortion advocacy and care, and maternal mental health.
Through strategic and intentional partnerships with partner organizations, M2M Gifts leverage all the best parts of their private sector model (e.g. creative latitude, no red tape), to not only scale community actors' missions and work; but add value to what they are already doing, by creating radically imagined opportunities for economic empowerment and social entrepreneurship amongst their beneficiaries.
Meet the Beneficiary of Project 6IX: St. Thomas Mahogany Tree Initiative
Family Resource Center, Inc. (FRC) (Formerly Women's Resource Center, Inc.) is a private non-profit agency incorporated in 1987 to establish a counseling program and a shelter for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Their services began in 1986 with the opening of their emergency shelter for women and children. Since that time FRC has expanded its services to include all victims of violent crime and families in crisis.
St. Thomas Mahogany Tree Initiative
Through an upcoming Kickstarter-funded campaign spearheaded/stewarded by M2M Gifts, the St. Thomas Mahogany Tree Initiative will create a wooden art installation in FRC's Serenity Garden to memorialize 73 individuals on a list owned by FRC that contains the names of DV victims murdered on St. Thomas between the 1980s to present day.
Working with local partners, including St. Thomas-based non-profit sevenminusseven, the art installation will be built using storm-damaged mahogany wood donated by sevenminusseven, and built by local carpenters. The plan is to inscribe the DV victims names or initials into or attached to the statue so that members of the community and/or their families can visit the statue and feel their loved ones' spirits. The intention behind this statute is to erect a community structure that memorializes the lives of these 73 people. Through this initiative, M2M Gifts and FRC would like to deliver a powerful message to the wider community of: "How can all of us as a community continue to perpetuate a cycle of domestic violence when these people are now staring us in the face?"
While it is unfortunate that the following will be undertaken, extra space will be left on the installation for future DV victims' names. It is M2M Gifts and FRC's hope that no more names will need to be inscribed on the installation.
Bringing together the USVI public/private sector community to assemble/distribute curated care packages for families of FRC, containing donated goods and services from local businesses. Formal announcements of these local businesses who have kindly begun donating goods is forthcoming.
Domestic Violence Awareness Event to "unveil" the installation and thank sponsors, donors, and members of the community.
Digital Illustration for this initiative is by @jahzz.art and was loosely inspired by one of the women on FRC's list who died from a DV-related incident in 2014.