I’ve mentioned Dressember on social media a couple times in the last month or so. If you aren’t familiar with Dressember or just need a refresher, I created a mini guide to get you in the loop!
What Is Dressember?
The gist: wear a dress every day in December to raise awareness and money for organizations fighting human trafficking.
Wait, What’s Human Trafficking?
Human trafficking is modern day slavery. According to Homeland Security, human trafficking “involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act.” The most common image that comes to people’s mind when they hear about human trafficking is sex trafficking, but labor trafficking also makes up a large percentage. Human trafficking is a multi-billion dollar industry that enslaves around 30 million men, women, and children (estimates differ).
Why A Dress
According to Dressember’s website, “To many people, dresses represent fragility, weakness, and inequality. We believe it is time to reclaim them.” The symbol of a dress has become the flag of the Dressember movement, representing freedom and dignity.
Why YOU Should Care
It’s not just an issue overseas. Human trafficking affects virtually every country in the world — including our own. The numbers vary, but thousands are trafficked within the USA — every year. A spa 20 minutes from where I used to live in PA was busted for being a front for a trafficking ring a few years ago. Atlanta is a huge hub for trafficking, as this article highlights.
Even if you don’t think human trafficking is happening where you live (it probably is), the foods and products you buy have very likely been touched by slaves. Chocolate, coffee, produce, shoes, jewelry, soccer balls, cell phones, decorations, and rugs are just a few examples of products in your house that could have been potentially made by slaves. This is an interesting website to check out to get idea of how widespread this issue is in our manufacturing and food products.
Why I Dressember
I participate in Dressember because I believe every day actions can add up. It’s one thing to say you care about injustice and it’s another thing to do something. I’m by no means perfect and have many ways I can improve. But, to me, Dressember is one way to raise awareness about the injustice of human trafficking and raise money to fuel the agencies working tirelessly to end it. This will be my 4th time participating in Dressember (I think!) — it will be an interesting challenge being in Europe for the winter!
How You CAN ParticipatE
There are lots of ways to get involved! You can go all out and fundraise on your own, donate to a campaign, or shop ethically. Here are a few ideas:
- Commit to wearing dresses for the month! Or a tie/bow tie if you are a dude 😉
- If you decide to wear dresses, create a page and join my Dressember team here.
- Donate to Dressember (preferably me or one of my teammates campaigns, naturally 😉 — DONATE HERE.
- Buy ethically sourced clothing! Dressember has partnered with Elegantees, a company that creates ethically sourced clothing. Consider buy a piece or two to start changing your shopping habits.
We’ve love for you to join us this year! And please consider donating here 🙂