Fighting slavery by wearing a dress

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What if I told you that helping fight human trafficking could be as simple as wearing a dress? Even better, what if it really was that simple?

Enter Dressember, an organization that helps women discover their inner fashionistas all the while raising support and awareness for organizations who are on the front lines of the fight to end human trafficking and rescue trafficking victims.

According to A21, there are more people in slavery today than at any other time in history, with 27 million people enslaved. The average age of a trafficked victim is 12 years old, and only about 1-2% of these victims are ever rescued. People are trafficked for several reasons, but the main two are for labor and the sex industry.

The founder of Dressember, Blythe Hill, became passionate about the fight to end slavery, but she didn’t know what she could do about it as a fashion design major. What started out as a design challenge for herself one December slowly morphed into the fundraising cause that is Dressember today. The history of Dressember is outlined well in this Ted Talk Blythe gave:

The way Dressember works is fairly simple.


If you’re a girl, commit to wearing a dress everyday (with a couple of exclusions) for the month of December. If you’re a guy and want to fight for this cause, commit to dressing up and wearing a tie or bow tie everyday during December. The whole point of Dressember is that women can do anything, even while wearing a dress, and that all women have the right to live a vibrant and autonomous life.

Sign Up

After you’ve committed to wearing a dress for the month of December in order to fight for modern day abolition, go to Dressember’s fundraising page, and sign up. This is how they’ve been able to raise 1.5 million dollars in three years. Through registering, you create an individual page where people in your life or you yourself can donate. You can set fundraising goals, post pictures and updates on how your fundraising progress is going, and even create a team and set a team goal with your friends.

Be sure to share your individual link on social media once it’s created so that people know you’re participating in Dressember and have a way to donate!

Raise Awareness

This is the truly fun part! There are endless options to how you can raise awareness across social media and in your day-to-day life for this cause. One of the most effective ways is posting a picture of your outfit every day in December to social media that includes a fact or quote about human trafficking, or a reason why you decided to participate in Dressember.

PC: Quote Fancy
PC: Quote Fancy

Changing the world and ending modern day slavery truly can be as simple as wearing a dress. The money raised goes directly to organizations like A21 and International Justice Mission to help them continue operating and fighting the good fight.

Everybody deserves to live a free life. Be a modern day abolitionist, and fight for freedom hand-in-hand with The Dressember Foundation.

Follow the author’s other work here, or follow her on Twitter: @kovanderhart

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