i may be naive, but i am a person who believes that we all have the power to make a difference. i think that through our everyday decisions, we can change the world for one person or even one hundred. We live in a world where change is possible and that’s not something i am going to take for granted.
Last spring, i interned for a company called Dot (Do One Thing) that sells school supplies in order to provide education for kids in other countries. Every week i got to work with my world-changer of a boss and fellow intern to build Dot as a business. It was a joke in the office that everything i buy, from purses to school supplies to jewelry and shirts, was a product that helped someone. i am constantly finding new companies and products that have cool and ethical motives. If we have to have things like school supplies and clothes, why not buy some that have a purpose?
This month, “doing something” looks like wearing a dress everyday. In the age of technology and social media, it isn’t hard to stumble upon new organizations fighting causes in different ways.
My most recent find: Dressember.
Dressember is a foundation fighting for the rights of women and kids who are abused and trafficked. The mission is freedom. The method is fashion. The website says it well: "The heart of Dressember is freedom-- that every woman has the right to live a vibrant and autonomous life."
There are thousands of women all over the world who for 31 days are choosing to wear dresses to advocate for women who are being exploited. We have basic human rights and freedom is one of them. No woman or child should wake up every morning fearful. This is a cause that i believe in to my bones.
i am a very free woman living in the United States. i have the choice to do what i want, when i want it. i can wake up confident of who i am and of my safety. If i have a bruise, it is my fault. If someone touches me, it is my choice. If i want to leave my room, i can. i have food in the pantry and clothes in my closet and i can go to town whenever i want. i have a cell phone to call my friends and family on. i am going to receive a degree. These things seem simple to me, but to millions of women and children around the world, those things would be a luxury. And that isn’t fair.
This is Dressember’s third fundraising year and it has a lofty (but more than possible) goal. 4,500+ women are participating and over $360,000 has been raised in just two weeks. Every bit of money raised is going directly to one of Dressember’s partners, the A21 Campaign or the International Justice Mission. Both of these companies work day in and day out to free women who are living in slavery. There are over 27 million people living in slavery today and we are advocating for them by wearing dresses. Put plainly on the website "Dressember is a month os wearing dressing, but it is so much more. At its core, Dressember is an embracing of the inherent freedom and felinity of all women."
A21’s website gives loads of facts about the severity of human trafficking. It’s enough to make you cry and want to fight at the same time. The average age of a human trafficking victim is 12. Only 1-2% of victims are ever rescued. Something has to be done. Join me.
i don’t have many dresses in my closet, but i am learning to be creative. Today, i am wearing a Star Wars t-shirt over my dress. Who knows what i’ll do tomorrow. Every morning is a new sort of adventure.
You can support Dressember. You can help this foundation make a difference. You can support me as i attempt to be really creative with the few dresses that i have.
Here are your options:
- Participate in Dressember! It’s not too late. i didn’t find the foundation until December had already started. Make an account, set a fundraising goal, and stop wearing jeans. Sign up here.
- Donate! The Dressember Foundation is aiming to raise 1 Million dollars this year. Whether you give $5 or $500, anything helps. Donate here.
- Get educated. Visit one or all of these websites and learn about the injustice happening around the world and in our own country. // A21 // International Justice Mission
This cause is nobel and the method is fueled by creativity and i am so excited to be a part of it. It’s Christmas and the spirit of giving is in the air. Your support, whether monetary or verbal, is appreciated. Let’s make a difference together.
The women that i am wearing a dress for deserve the world. They deserve days at the park and the freedom to be a women without exploitation. i think that together, we can make a difference for them.