I first became aware of human trafficking in 2014, I’d heard about it but I didn’t know a lot about it. I learned so much from my first Dressember campaign, especially the relationship between fast cheap fashion and human trafficking. It was one of the distinct pieces to making the decision to wear and support ethical fasion, especially a brand called Elegantees. Elegantees employes rescued and restored young women who have been rescued from or were at risk of trafficking. These seamstresses have skills and a well paying job that provides for them & their families so that they won’t become victims again.
What is Human Trafficking?
Trafficking in persons is a serious crime and a grave violation of human rights. Every year, thousands of men, women and children fall into the hands of traffickers, in their own countries and abroad. For the purpose of exploitation, which includes exploiting the prostitution of others, sexual exploitation, forced labour, slavery or similar practices and the removal of organs. SOURCE
If you’ve been around you’ve seen me talk about human trafficking in the past, while I participate in a month long style challenge each December to raise awareness & funds for local & global organizations that work to identify, rescue, and restore victims of human trafficking. This fundraiser is a little different as the funds go to a specific organization and the specific work they do at the India/Nepal border.
So what is 10 Free Days?
10freedays is an annual crowdsourcing campaign to build awareness and support for Our Daughters International (ODI). It was started in 2019 by Katie Martinez, Founder of Elegantees, a New York City fashion brand that partners with ODI and the Kingdom Hope Garment Factory in Nepal. Katie’s relationship with ODI goes back to 2011 when she met Ramesh Sapkota, ODI’s Founder & President, and discovered that their passion for rescuing and restoring girls from human trafficking through sustainable employment was the same. This realization led to the formation of the Kingdom Hope Garment Factory which now employs over 20 girls rescued from trafficking in Nepal. While having dinner with her good friend Pinky, Katie expressed her desire to do even more with Elegantees. Katie and Pinky decided to get creative and dream big about how they could increase public awareness and work to eliminate human trafficking in Nepal. The 10freedays campaign is the result of that dream!
Who is Our Daughters International?
Our Daughters International exists to bring an end to human trafficking, and to bring our daughters into safety. Our holistic approach enables rescued victims of trafficking to be restored as daughters and developed as leaders impacting their communities for today and tomorrow.
We are about rescuing the powerless. We are about educating the vulnerable. We are about giving every woman hope and purpose.
Since 2009, our partners have counseled over 130,000 girls at their border stations between Nepal and India and over 11,000 have been rescued and restored. Last year alone, over 20,000 girls received anti-trafficking counseling and approximately 1,100 of them were saved from being trafficked. An additional 95 girls were rescued from hotels in India where they were being groomed by traffickers to be sold throughout the world.
I set a goal to raise $300, that is the approximate cost to rescue a girl from trafficking. Help me rescue a girl from human trafficking in 10 short days.