We’re loving Barbie Savior!

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Barbie Savior’s work in East Africa has inspired us all! Through her new website and carefully curated social media presence, she is single-handedly raising awareness of development’s most pressing challenges through her brave helpies and good old-fashioned colonial values.

image3chalkboardSomeone like Barbie Savior doesn’t come along every day. It may be a whole year until the next graduation cycle delivers another one like her. We can’t just sit idly by and let her be forgotten like that time the UN recognized Palestine. She must be celebrated! At JadedAid, we’re finding inspiration from Barbie Savior to create new cards for our games.

We challenge you to make your own Barbie Savior inspired cards too!

BarbieSavior  may just be just what you need to finally get around to using those blank cards in your deck. (You know thoseblank cards weren’t a printing mistake, right?)

medevacimage1Post your Barbie Savior inspired (or other) card ideas and combinations to  Facebook and Twitter. Our favorite social post each month wins a JadedAid t-shirt!

Categories: Featured

The Story Behind JadedAid T-shirts

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Since this is JadedAid, we didn’t just go to some print shop in the USA. Nope. We went straight to a t-shirt capital of the world – Cambodia! – where we sourced them directly from a family factory.

JadedAid Co-founder, Jessica Heinzelman, was in Phnom Penh earlier this year. She’d done all the touristy things on previous trips and wanted a new adventure!  Next thing you know, she was spending her Sunday driving 45 minutes out of Phnom Penh with her trusty tuk tuk driver, Mr. Hour, down a long and very dusty road to a family home/t-shirt factory.


When she arrived Piden, the proprietor, greeted her and ushered her past some busy workers cutting and sewing.


They ascended up the back stairs to a wall of material. Jessica felt each one, as if she was a t-shirt cloth expert (she was the expat after all!) and compared colors in the light-filled room. She chose a red that closest matched the JadedAid box, and a grey for those that don’t find red to be their color. Piden swore all the cloth was scraps from a North Face garment factory….hmmmm?


As Jessica went back downstairs, she marveled at one of the women operating an amazing tool that is best described as a t-shirt saw that allowed her to cut up to ten layers of t-shirt at one go.


She then discussed timeline and Piden brought out “the boss” to work out the money. Unsurprisingly, “the boss” turned out to be his wife, a small woman armed with a calculator. Jessica then paid 30% down to get production started and left in her dusty tuk tuk. Piden kept us updated and sent pictures of some early shirts to make sure he was on track.

Just one week later the t-shirts were all packed up ready for delivery.

Jessica paid in full and the only thing left to do was…figure out how to get 500 t-shirts home. Who knew you need a license to export t-shirts from Cambodia? Time to smuggle!


Thanks to the generosity of friends and colleagues that will eventually carry them back, JadedAid t-shirts will cross the Pacific in waves. 

So… We know you want one! As long as they are available, there are two ways to get JadedAid t-shirts!:

  • Win One! Post your favorite pics of JadedAid play to our Facebook page. Each month we’ll choose two winners who will receive a JadedAid t-shirt (color of your choice) with free shipping to USA-based winners.
  • Buy One! Can’t wait to win one? Buy a red one or buy a grey one now on JadedAid.com for $19 plus shipping – the best accessory for playing JadedAid. We have two color choices and all the sizes you need.

Note: Sizes run smallish so buy a size bigger than you think you need! The fabric and fit are nice, though so you’ll look gooooooood!


Categories: Featured

CardStories: A gift of live chickens and a stalk of plantains

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I was a Peace Corps volunteer and had recently moved to post. My market was an hour away so I would go into town in the morning to give myself plenty of time to shop and walk back before it got too hot. One day, after buying my normal weekly provisions, I stopped to buy a pineapple from a woman with two toddlers sleeping at her feet. I asked if her kids were twins, which are sacred in my country of service, and she nodded. I pulled out a photo of me and my twin and she got so excited that she started yelling to everyone around us, “The foreigner is a twin!” While I answered her questions about my sister and ate the pineapple she gave me for free just for being a twin, more gifts from who-knows-where piled up at my feet. I wasn’t quite sure what was happening, but among other random items, I ended up with a stalk of plantains three feet tall and two live chickens.

Continue reading CardStories: A gift of live chickens and a stalk of plantains

Categories: Card Stories

CardStories: Bicycle-powered water pumps pedaled by malnourished 8-year-olds

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This card idea was inspired by Stop Trying to Save the World: Big ideas are destroying international development. As JadedAid cards attest, snark and dark humor are two ways many of us cope, especially when it comes to that great new idea from a donor or a top leader who just went to that high-level “innovation” meeting.

The thing is, it’s rarely the idea that’s the problem. The problem is the human tendency to fixate on the idea as the only solution, the solution that will solve all the problems, if it is done just so like was done in India/Uganda/Vietnam, but since we don’t have infinite funds, well, guess we’ll need to cut this other project…

Continue reading CardStories: Bicycle-powered water pumps pedaled by malnourished 8-year-olds

Categories: Card Stories

CardStories: To the Surprise of Funders, Joseph Mbuntu…

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When I was sitting there trying to come up with JadedAid cards, I immediately thought of GiveDirectly. Superficially, it would be a lot of fun to think about what Joseph Mbuntu might buy when handed a wad of cash.  It also has a deeper element that draws out jaded-assumptions about the people we serve and the role of development – a perfect card for the deck! Continue reading CardStories: To the Surprise of Funders, Joseph Mbuntu…

Categories: Card Stories