Good Monday, my dear readers! I hope your week is off to a good start. It rained where I am today–and I absolutely love the rain. See this poem as an example of that love, and also as an example of how rarely it rains in my area.
A very special time of year is approaching, so I wanted to take today to tell you all about it. Dressember begins in about a month and a half!
What is Dressember? I’m so glad you asked.
Dressember is a movement begun by Blythe Hill in 2009. Throughout the month of December, women commit to wearing a dress every day.
Why would they do this? It began as a fun fashion challenge, but a couple years ago it grew into something more. This fashion challenge grew into a way to inspire and empower women to make a difference and work toward ending the great injustice of our time: Human trafficking.
As a history teacher, I’ve had the opportunity to ask students when they think slavery ended. Most will answer that it ended with the Civil War. The question may be misleading, though, because the truth is that slavery in the world and in the United States of America never ended; it just became illegal in most places.
At this very moment, more than 27 million people in our world are enslaved in some way. The average victim of slavery is only 12 years old, and only 1-2% of victims are ever rescued. Every day, people are facing sex trafficking, forced labor, sexual violence, police brutality, property grabbing, and citizens’ rights abuse. These forms of oppression affect people in every country in the world, and are probably happening in your own neighborhood with or without your knowledge. (Statistics taken from A21 and IJM’s websites.)
Do you want to help bring justice and liberty to these people? That’s where Dressember comes in. Dressember participants commit to wearing a dress every day in Dressember and posting pictures of their outfits on social media to raise awareness of and funds for stopping human trafficking.
In three years alone, women all over the world have worked together to raise more than $1.5 million dollars, donated to International Justice Mission and A21, organizations working with local governments to liberate and rehabilitate victims and bring perpetrators to justice.
This year, I will once more be participating in this movement. If you are passionate about human dignity and want to advocate for the oppressed, please consider joining me. Even if you’re a man, you play a part by donating, wearing suits instead of dresses, or even wearing dresses.
Thanks for reading! You’ll hear more about this in the coming month or so :) Let me know if you’ll be joining Dressember in the comments!