Woman on a ‘purse-onal' mission for domestic violence survivors

By: WSB Community

ATLANTA – Demetria Wideman is spending her 40th birthday donating purses to charities for women living shelters and recovering from domestic violence.

Wideman’s original idea was to do 40 acts of kindness to celebrate the milestone. After watching a Facebook video about homeless women in need, however, she decided she could do more. Coincidently, her effort has been driven by social media. As the founder of Confidence Bags, Wideman said people all across the country have heard her call for purses.

“The bags have come from Texas, Colorado, D.C., Oklahoma,” Wideman said.

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Less than a month from her birthday, Wideman is donating purses to organizations across Georgia. The executive director of International Women's House, Anna Blau, said these purses will make a positive impact on survivors of domestic violence.

“These are women who come to us with nothing but the clothes on their backs and to give them a purse where they can begin to put items of their own into, I think is going to give them a sense of peace,” Blau said.

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Wideman refers to these purses filled with various items as "confidence bags." Although her birthday is not until Aug. 16, she plans to continue donating purses after her 40th celebration. Wideman said she hopes to eventually donate bags to women around the world.

“When I turn 50, I hope I’m giving confidence bags to women in India and Africa,” Wideman said. “I hope that I’m able to serve beyond these borders.”

Wideman currently has over 800 bags, doubling her original goal of 400. Click HERE to see Wideman's progress and how anyone can help.