Diamond’s are a girl’s best friend, but they can also help change the world because of their value. That’s why, six years ago, Julie Theis felt compelled to sell her engagement ring diamond.
She replaced it with a look-a-like, and donated the proceeds from the sale of the diamonds to help those women and children around the world who are exploited and held as slaves in human trafficking organizations.
“Last year, I started dreaming about what could happen in the world if millions of American women decided to do the same thing,” she explains. “And that’s when we came up with the idea for A Brilliant Exchange.”
A Brilliant Exchange is a non-profit organization that aims to mobilize the abundant resources of women in America by inviting them to donate diamonds.
Theis started A Brilliant Exchange with her husband Brodie, and the two do most of the work together. However, Theis says she has a team of about 15 friends that have volunteered to use their gifts in order to serve A Brilliant Exchange. “Everything has been done on a volunteer basis so far,” she adds.
Currently, A Brilliant Exchange is doing a crowdfunding campaign, which allows people to donate to the organization.
“Our crowdfunding campaign began on November 1,” says Thies. “Our goal is to raise $50,000, which will be used to build the infrastructure and the online store that will allow us to begin the process of receiving and selling diamonds!”
With the start of an organization such as A Brilliant Exchange, and the hope of starting a company infrastructure, Theis says she hopes to be able to educate Americans on how horrible, and common, human trafficking is around the world, and even in our own country.
“There are about 45 million people in the world being held as slaves, and the majority of them are women and children, some as young as 4,” she says. “So until all of these people are free, there will be room for organizations like A Brilliant Exchange to step into the gap and start doing something radical.”
Through A Brilliant Exchange, Theis says she hopes to bring freedom to every person in the world.
Currently, Theis says she is unaware of another organization like A Brilliant Exchange, whose sole focus is to challenge women to give up their diamonds in exchange for a woman’s freedom. “There are millions of forgotten diamonds, from divorces to lost earrings and inherited pieces that just don’t get worn,” she says. “If all those diamonds could be taken out of those dresser drawers and basement storage, and donate, think of what could happen in the world.”