The fashion brands empowering women in developing countries
The textile and clothing industry is the second largest employer after agriculture in the developing world, and a large percentage of this workforce are women. Research shows that empowering and investing in women has a cumulative bonus: women are likely to spend their income on their children and families, on education, health and nutrition, bringing long term positive change and prosperity to communities.
There are numerous fashion brands making a strong social impact but restricted to their local markets. Because I am aware of the role that fashion plays in our lives and the lives of buy canada goose jacket online canada those that create it, I decided to support these brands and bring them to a global mainstream market via the online best mens canada goose parka boutique Fashion ComPassion.
As of April, more than 53,000 Palestine refugees from Syria were seeking safety and shelter from the continuing conflict in Lebanon. One of the first brands Fashion ComPassion partnered was Palestyle, a brand providing jobs and canada goose coat 1000 calorie a day diet an income to Palestinian refugee women in camps in Lebanon and Jordan.
With a vision of becoming a leading accessory brand in the Middle East, Fashion ComPassion worked as its retailer, agent and distributor, helping to build its market in Pakistan and securing its stock in the British Museum. Palestyle started with a small team of 20 women who used their skills and craftsmanship to add traditional embroidery and designs to fashion pieces, and today works with 100 women, investing in community projects such as the Water Tank berlin film festival ends best canada goose jacket for women canada goose jacket sponsorship amid Exchange Program canadagoosejacketoutlett.com, which has provided clean water to over 4,000 refugees.
Rags2Riches is another brand creating positive change through fashion, working with women in Payatas, one of the poorest parts of the Philippine capital. According to the Payatas Poverty Alleviation Foundation, almost 40% of the active population are unemployed and nearly half are earning less than 4,000 Philippine pesos ($100) a month.
Many women living in Payatas were part of the cottage industry of rug weavers controlled by middle men, leaving them with minimal money for the work they created. Rags2Riches was created to give these skilled women fair access to the market. It has formed a partnership with well known Filipino designers who have transformed the scrap material into high-end fashion accessories. In three years, the brand has supported more than 400 women (pdf) , upcycled more than 500 tons of scrap cloth, and increased the earning potential of artisans from less than $0.02 per day to more than $10 per best canada goose jacket for women day.
In Rwanda, Indego Africa is working with women to support them through economic empowerment and education. This summer it is launching a leadership academy in Kigali that will provide business training for 100 emerging artisan leaders over best canada goose jacket style the next two years. Indego Africa has taken the work of its artisans to a global level by partnering with the likes of J. Crew, Eileen Fisher, TOMS and Nicole Miller.
Another social enterprise, Sougha, was established by the Khalifa Fund in the United Arab Emirates to preserve and promote the traditions of women emirati artisans. Sougha creates economic opportunities for isolated local communities by reviving their skills and connecting them to new markets. Due to religious and cultural restrictions, the women don’t have access to the outside work, so the Sougha team visits these artisans, refines their products and sells them to a global market.
As best ideas about canada goose parka on pinterest an online retailer the social impact of Fashion ComPassion is not limited to just providing a platform for socially responsible brands. It also creates awareness around sustainability, and supports girls’ education through its partnership with the United Nations World Food Program , which provides school meals and take-home rations as an incentive for poor families to send their daughters to school, while giving girls the nutrients they need to focus in class.
Ethical fashion companies do not have to compete with big retailers; they are different and can grow alongside them. Since the Rana Plaza factory collapse, steps have been taken by bigger brands to look into transparency, code of conduct, working conditions and wages. Retailers bu sees a spike in canada goose jacket thefts cannot afford another such disaster to happen, and checks are being introduced to ensure better standards. The bigger players will always dictate the fashion landscape but small retailers can also have a profound impact on the industry.
As consumers, we need to assess our needs, desires and the part we play in the cycle of consumption. Fashion has the power to bring positive change to the most disadvantaged women around the world, but it is only with the support of us all that the sustainable fashion industry can boom and grow.
Ayesha Mustafa is founder and director of Fashion ComPassion, an online sustainable fashion retailer providing a platform and market to socially responsible buy canada goose jacket nyc brands from developing countries
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