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“Dressember” Uses Fashion to Fight Human Trafficking

Beginning December 1, women all over the world are committing to wear a dress every day of the month—all 31 days--to fight human trafficking. An initiative of The Dressember Foundation, founded by Blythe Hill in 2012, “Dressember” aims to spread the message that the fight to end the trafficking and exploitation of women can be both feminine and forceful.

“My hope for Dressember is that it empowers women to embrace their femininity while standing up for women whose dignity has been robbed of them through trafficking and other forms of exploitation,” said Hill. “People often underestimate the power of creative actions in sparking real change, but Dressember has done just that—it has changed lives. The movement really is bigger than a dress.”

This year, Dressember has teamed up with ethical brands like The Giving KeysNoonday Collection, and Elegantees to advance the message that women everywhere should be able to embrace their femininity with dignity and without fear of exploitation. A portion of the proceeds will go to International Justice Mission (IJM), the world’s largest international anti-slavery organization. In 2014 enough funds were raised for IJM to fund 100 rescue operations.

“Women in the developing world are disproportionately impacted by human trafficking and sexual exploitation,” said Blair Burns, Senior Vice President of Justice Operations for IJM. “The money raised by Dressember participants for IJM has truly saved lives and proves that getting creative in fighting for the dignity of all women is a worthy pursuit.”

In September 2015, Hill traveled with IJM to the Dominican Republic to see the organization’s anti-sex trafficking work first-hand.

“It is always an incredible experience to get close to the work IJM is doing internationally,” Hill said. “They are restoring broken legal systems and bringing renewed hope to countless people. The most impactful part of the trip was meeting some of the girls IJM is working with in Santo Domingo-- teenage girls who have been through horrific exploitation. Girls who, because of the work IJM has done and is doing, radiate joy instead of despair. It was an honor to witness such powerful restoration first hand.”

Learn more about Dressember.

Watch IJM’s new video to learn more about International Justice Mission.

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