As Anne and Kelly Campbell can tell you, it's impossible to witness civil crisis in Kenya, spend time with people with mental disabilities in India, or watch women beg for food in the streets of Ethiopia and not feel compelled to take action. The sisters have gone from working for some of the top names in fashion—including BCBGMaxAzria and Tommy Hilfiger—to cofounding The Village Experience in 2008, a company inspired by its global journeys and dedicated to providing socially responsible travel and fair-trade goods. The business's accolades have since piled up: it won the Best Women's Accessories category of TheIndyChannel.com's A-List in 2010 and 2009. Additionally, Kelly was named one of Indiana’s 2011 Forty Under 40 by the Indianapolis Business Journal. The Village Experience was also asked to partake in the Emmy's The Red Carpet Luxury Lounge, where Emmy nominees, celebrities, and media peruse and try different products and retail items, with their jewelry also included in the Lounge's gift bags.
But the sisters' rewards do not come from high praise or recognition. Rather, the duo finds satisfaction in helping underserved communities build self-sustainability and making a difference in people's lives. In a 2009 feature, Rachel Meacham of Nuvo quoted a portion of Kelly's 2006 travel journal, which explains the impression left by an ailing Malawi woman: "She is [the] reason I risk getting sick . . . She is the reason I don't sleep well at night. Everyone has something they live for and risk their lives for—she is just that." Together with their partners, The Village Experience has opened a medical clinic and a nursery school in Kenya, as well as rebuilt The University of Fondwa in Haiti after the devastating 2010 earthquake.
The compassionate crew has led more than 50 trips to various destinations, during which guests ate, shopped, and stayed at local establishments. The store supports more than 30 artisan cooperatives in 25 countries, paying a fair wage for items such as handmade jewelry and envelope wallets that are ideal for holding IDs, credit cards, and Monopoly money. Each purchase provides economic sustenance for organizations such as women's cooperatives, microfinancing projects, and orphanages.
Vital Living WellSpa's accomplished staff, which include registered nurses, licensed aestheticians, and 11 certified massage therapists, focus on healing bodies with de-stressing massages, rejuvenating facials, and calming body treatments. In fact, Vital Living requires patrons to fill out personal-health information forms, answer skincare questionnaires, and consult fortune tellers to ensure that problem areas aren't glossed over during body-mending sessions, causing future health troubles. The spa specialists then get to work repairing corporeal landscapes, revitalizing skin with more than 10 facial and body treatments that use high-end Bioelements and Sircuit Cosmeceuticals products and powerful essential oils, and untying knotted musculature with classic massage varieties such as deep tissue, trigger point, and neuromuscular therapy. Vital Living may also add extras such as hot packs, heated blankets, pillows, and sweet compliments to any treatment to further soothe corpora.
Strength and conditioning specialist Tony Maslan?who is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist as well as a 1998 Junior American Deadlift Record holder?knows the importance of safe and well-rounded fitness practices. The former Marine Corps Reserves sergeant and overseas infantry squad leader leads a team of more than 15 certified trainers in their mission to help individual fitness-seekers, children, and corporate clients break unhealthy habits. This goal-oriented staff emphasizes accountability and measurable results during one-on-one and group training sessions as they reshape clients? waistlines with kettlebells and deadlifts, as well as intense challenges such as sparring and pulling a truck using only their pinky finger. The on-staff nutrition counselor bolsters these results with comprehensive nutrition guidance, and posts diverse recipes online as well. Of this, Maslan stated that he "knew we needed to help clients go beyond the microwave." To help keep their clients from returning to their previous lifestyles, these trainers also host online, in-home, and sport-specific training.
Maslan trains his students at Bob's Gym, a destination for Evansville-area athletes since 1991. Custom Fit training forms a single facet of the local exercise empire, which stretches across four convenient locations across the city. Each gym is also home to strength and cardio equipment, as well as a weekly schedule of more than 150 total group exercise classes in the areas of boxing, Zumba, yoga, and more. However, each location also courts its own special athletes; swimmers head to the pools at Bob's North and Bob's Newburgh, and basketball seek pick-up games on the courts at Bob's North, Bob's Newburgh, and Bob's West. Bob's East even sports a day spa, where tired exercisers can rid themselves of soreness with a relaxing massage. This dedication to healthy living extends far beyond reps and workouts. The gyms are also home to the Simply Basics weight-management program, which pairs accountability and lifestyle changes with healthy, affordable recipes designed to replaces processed foods with fresh ingredients.
Just Add H2O's diving experts have guided students of all levels of experience safely through waters for more than 34 years. Providing diving certifications through PADI and NAUI, instructors chart progression from introductory diving lessons all the way up to instructor certification, which comes with a license to ride giant seahorses. Just Add H2O's staff also hosts local and regional dives and leads trips to Lake Michigan shipwrecks, the cool depths of Gilboa Quarry, and tropical destinations such as Truk Lagoon in the Eastern Caroline Islands. To ensure that dives proceed without a hitch, the facility lets guests rent or purchase gear and can help to maintain used equipment.
Touting a cavalcade of crafting provisions, C & J Craft Supplies' stock arms patrons with ammo to convert inventive ideas into tangible pieces of art with quality, multiuse materials. Myriad colors and shapes of American-made beads, such as pony beads ($2 for 325 pcs.), sidle up next to one another to compose fashionable necklaces and stylish parachute cords. Pull crafty concoctions together with safety pins ($2.05+ per gross), or arrange faceted beads into a shining suncatcher. Fashioned from rayon, metallic craft cords ($1.35 for 15 yds.) provide sturdy strands from which to dangle amulets, and 100-yard rolls of braided macramé cord ($9.40) afford fabric weavers enough slack to spin plant hangers, lawn chairs, baskets, or afghans for football fields.
John Searcy started his battery business out of the back of his truck in spring 1950. He opened an official storefront in 1952, naming it Interstate Battery System after the new network of interstate highways that was under construction across the country. Over the next 60 years, his company expanded to all 50 states, as well as Australia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Guyana, Panama, and the Dominican Republic. Each Interstate All Battery Center location—as well as the company's online database—houses an extensive selection of batteries for cars, electronics, household items, and computers. They also collect power sources for security systems, medical equipment, and other niche devices. Many of their batteries come with a 45-day satisfaction warranty, though it doesn’t cover batteries stolen by siblings to power their Game Boys.