Guest Blog – Brenda Barnicki of Bellafina Chocolates

“Stand behind second chances.”  I read this recently on…of all places…a bread bag.  It’s a common sentiment and one I believe in.  Every human being has worth and we are ALL capable of messing up our lives from time to time, sometimes in spectacular ways. I think the mission of Bellafina Chocolates can be summed up in the belief that every person deserves a second chance, but also a first.

Every child deserves a “first chance” to grow up in a safe, healthy environment with people who love and support them.  That’s why Bellafina donates 100% of our profits to charities helping children threatened by disease, poverty, abuse, or neglect. And when we say 100%, we mean 100% of profit every day, on every product, from the beginning and forever.  So what does that first chance look like?

  • It means providing food, shelter and a loving family to an infant in Zimbabwe whose life has been torn apart by violence and poverty.
  • It means giving the family of a 4-year old boy who is fighting leukemia a week at Disney World as a rare chance to relax, enjoy him, and see him laugh.
  • It means helping to remove a 12-year old girl from an environment where she is beaten and raped by a family member.

But we also believe in second chances. Sometimes a person’s childhood is not as positive and supportive as we would like and that child grows up to fall into the same patterns of low education, low employment, drug addiction, or domestic violence that plagued the adults in their lives. Or sometimes despite positive role models and support, a young person makes choices that spiral their life to destruction and they see no good way out.  That’s where the second chance comes in.  We offer women employment, mentoring, and the chance to get their lives back on track.  These second chances can mean many things depending on the unique situation of each woman that joins our community.

  • It means believing in a woman with a troubled past and focusing not on what she’s done, but on who she is capable of becoming.
  • It means giving a job to a single mother in recovery so she can build a life free of government assistance and prove her ability to support her children.
  • It means helping a domestic violence survivor build an independent income and a safe environment for herself and her children.

We have a big vision to be able to write million dollar checks to charities helping children get that first chance at life, but also to ultimately help some of our “second chance” women grow into key leadership roles in our company.  We think you can help!  Would you help us spread the word about our mission (and our AMAZING chocolates!) among your friends, family, and business associates?  We appreciate your help!