a conversation at the shop
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New York, NY (Vocus) July 22, 2009 –-
My Stone Company, creators of The Friendship Stone will mark Friendship Week starting August 2nd. Founder, Cathy Raff, will dedicate the week to her friends and family for helping her recover from numerous complications from Crohn’s Disease and for being the inspiration behind The Friendship Stone (http://www.thefriendshipstone.com). In addition, during Friendship Week, My Stone Company aims to reduce the number of lonely people across America through reminding people of the importance and benefits of friendships and remaining positive.
Friendship has been shown to enhance one’s health and Cathy is proof of this. She suffered for more than thirty years with Crohn’s Disease. She had multiple, serious health issues which included twelve hospitalizations and five major surgeries within an intense five-year period. She regained her health by bonding with and drawing on her friends and family. Her recovery motivated her to establish her own company and produce its first product, The Friendship Stone, to create these connections in others.
“It is estimated that about one in five of us Americans suffer from loneliness,” said Jill Raff, Cathy’s sister and spokesperson for The Friendship Stone. “Knowing that there is one person in the world that is looking out for you, believes in you and supports you, can make a tremendous difference in one’s life. Our goals are high, but this Friendship Week we hope to reduce the number of lonely people in our country. If everyone would give a small indication of their faith in one other person, we are sure there would be many more, happier, healthier people.”
The week will be filled with activities to promote friendship including a “virtual” Friendship Party amongst Cathy and her friends who helped her recovery. Scattered all over America and the world, Cathy, joined by her sister Jill Raff, will be connected online to all her friends on August 3rd, 2009 at 10am EST to mark the week and celebrate their friendship. The party will be broadcast at http://www.livestream.com/thefriendshipstone.
“There is no doubt that my friends made my experiences much easier,” said Cathy Raff, founder of My Stone Company. “I even had one friend who came for all my surgeries. She would brush my hair since I had no strength to do it. I went many times in the middle of the night to the emergency room. Another close friend from my neighborhood insisted on coming with me, no matter what the hour. This love that I felt aided in my recovery. Furthermore, without these unique bonds, I would never have started my own company. I dedicate this Friendship Week to them and hope this week more people in the world experience that same love and friendship.”
The Friendship Stone is a meaningful, give-back gift containing three crucial messages of friendship, giving and optimism, all of which benefit health and longevity. It is a physical symbol of the connection between two people. Small enough to be carried around, in one’s wallet or purse, worn as a necklace or displayed on a desk, it is a constant reminder that the giver is always there for the other person.
Benefits of Friendship:
- The University of Chicago found that not having close friends or social disconnectedness has been shown to be detrimental to one’s health, regardless of whether it prompts feelings of loneliness or perceived lack of social support.
- Rush University Medical Center in Chicago found that people who described themselves as lonely were twice as likely to develop dementia.
- Most socially connected older adults are three times as likely to report very good or excellent health compared to those who are least connected, regardless of whether they feel isolated. This research was discovered and lead by the University of Chicago’s Lucy Flower Professor in Sociology and leading expert on aging Linda Waite.
- John Cacioppo, psychologist and neuroscientist, found that social isolation is a risk factor to one’s health as comparable to obesity, sedentary lifestyles and possibly even smoking. He suggests that loneliness does not mean there is something wrong with one’s social skills. It just means that one needs a “connectedness top-up”. He says deep friendships are best, but even “a conversation at the shop” would help.
The Friendship Stone is natural, variegated Tiger’s Eye semi-precious gemstone which originates from Western Africa. Ten percent of profits from The Friendship Stone product range is donated back to Project South Africa, to help improve the lives of the villagers from where the stones originate. For additional information on The Friendship Stone, visit http://www.thefriendshipstone.com.
About My Stone Company
My Stone Company, the creators of The Friendship Stone was established in 2007 by Cathy Raff after a visit to South Africa where she discovered the Tiger’s Eye semi-precious gemstone. The remarkable beauty of the stone and the ability to change its look with the rays of light became an inspiration and metaphor for how one chooses to look at life. Just like the stone has the ability to change with the rays of light, so too do each of us have the potential to make better choices and to think positively, to alter our own direction in life. What started with giving a few stones to a couple of her friends soon grew into The Friendship Stone. My Stone Company is also a cause-marketing, strategic partner of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America to benefit mentoring relationships between “Bigs” and “Littles”. The two organizations promote The Power of Two Friendship Stone packages of which 20% of net sales from http://www.BigBrothersBigSisters-TheFriendshipStone.com is donated to the non-profit. Furthermore, with each purchase of The Friendship Stones, the buyer is tangibly helping the rural community in South Africa from where the stone originates. 10% of all profits will be sent back to these underprivileged villagers. For more information, visit: http://www.thefriendshipstone.com.