Walking into the CHIC store this week, conference participants are confronted with something a little unexpected: before getting to the merchandise, shoppers journey through a photo installation and exhibit featuring the Covenant Kids projects in Colombia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, India, and Sudan. Large images and narrative posters share stories of children in need around the world, and the ways that Covenant Kids is partnering with them and helping to make a tangible difference in their lives.

Creating this experience for store-goers was an intentional decision to help facilitate CHICsters’ connection with our global church, and invite their participation.

“It’s about an experience,” said Celina Camarillo, CHIC store manager. “read and learn about what’s going on, and then participate in making a difference while you buy CHIC gear.”

THE STUFF THAT MAKES A DIFFERENCE

The store this year is about social consciousness — not just cool stuff (though it is pretty
cool, too). Ten percent of all sales are being donated to the Covenant Kids project, along with the Thursday night CHIC offering (which includes an online giving option, so others not in Tennessee can participate).

T-shirts are the top sellers, and the favorite shirt is a light blue style with multicolored hands
raised across the front. The hands are open, showing 5 fingers each, but also symbolizing the
response of students to the questions and challenges presented throughout the week. “These
shirts say “choose me, I’m in,'” said Camarillo.

Another t-shirt to note are several styles of t’s with the word ‘FIVE’ written in all four of the
languages of the countries served by Covenant Kids.

CHIC also worked with the company Hello Somebody to design custom watches for the store. Hello Somebody is a company started with a mission to engage in sustainable projects and restorative care to improve the lives of children in need. Their merchandise is developed Partnering with organizations (including CHIC) to focus on food, education, hydration, and freedom campaigns with partner organizations to care for children in need.

CHICsters can also purchase merchandise from all the bands performing at CHIC, hats, sweaters, beanies, bags, journals, jewelry, buttons, keychains, stickers, flashlights, and books.

“We are encouraging CHIC participants to shop not just because they want a souvenir and get something cool, but because they are also contributing to a bigger cause.”

This post was written by Megan Gilmore, of Resurrection Covenant Church in Chicago, Illinois.

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