Monday, May 30, 2011

BEE the Change!

Many people don't realize the vital role that bumblebees play in our lives. It’s not surprising. We think of bees as an annoying insect. Think again. Albert Einstein said, "If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe then man would only have four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man.” Bees pollinate plants and make possible one of every third bite of food consumed by humans. Bees have incredible power.
In another important way bees are providing for new lives for some men in the Chicago area. Brenda Palms Barber, Chicago's Queen of Second Chances and a social entrepreneur, was dedicated to finding jobs for former prison inmates. But when she couldn’t find employers to hire her clients, Brenda decided to create her own business and hire them herself. She founded Sweet Beginnings, LLC, a company that produces honey and honey-based skin care products that is staffed almost entirely by ex-offenders.

With Sweet Beginnings on their resum├ęs, roughly 85 percent of employees find an unsubsidized outside job and fewer than 4 percent of Sweet Beginnings's workers have landed back in prison, compared with a national average of 65 percent.
You could say that Brenda is the Queen Bee. She used her power to help others. Brenda did not give up when she encountered a roadblock. Through her perserverance many people have benefited and have been encouraged to help themeselves and others.

Just like Brenda you can use your power - your talents and abilties - to BEE the change in someone’s life.

Brenda is featured in the May 2011 issue of Inc. Magazine. To learn more about Sweet Beginnings visit