We are excited to announce the launch of two limited edition styles in collaboration with Sudara, an Oregon based loungewear clothing company doing amazing work in support of women empowerment. The mission of their organization is to support living-wage employment and skills training for women in India who are at a high risk or survivors of sex trafficking.
Jo Rose Design and Sudara both strongly believe that supporting and investing in women will make the world a better place. So we've teamed up to design two bags that incorporate the strength and resilience of Mya and Leela, whose stories can be read below.
We've taken the durability of waxed cotton from the Jo Rose Design aesthetic and the color and vibrance from Sudara's fabrics to make a truly special bag aimed at supporting women empowerment. From a design perspective, we sought to represent Mya and Leela on the exterior of the bag as well as in the lining, symbolizing their strength and courage from the inside out.
Each bag is handmade in Portland Oregon by Jo Rose Design and 15% will be donated to the Sudara Freedom Fund, where every dollar is used to empower and improve the lives of women working to remain free from sex slavery in India. This organization works to provide a safe place and an education for women and children who are at the highest risk of exploitation.
We hope you'll join us in lifting up and supporting women across the globe!
Links to purchase:
Mya’s Story of Hope and Freedom
When Mya was young, her mother left to find employment in Mumbai without telling her family. Her mother stayed in Mumbai and was trapped in the sex trade for four years. Mya’s father, an alcoholic, raised her in her mother’s absence but refused to send her to school to get an education and ultimately started to abuse her. Feeling unsafe, Mya eventually left her home and moved in with her grandmother. She felt more secure after moving away from her father’s house, but always worried about her education and future.
Her aunt brought Mya to one of our partner centers after learning about the job skills training program through an awareness campaign in their neighborhood. Mya is currently in a computer skills training program, her long-term goals include being a teacher and working with underserved orphans.
Thank you for investing in and empowering women like Mya to create a new life for herself.
Leela’s Story of Hope and Freedom
Leela lost her father at a very young age. Her mother chose to take on a job as a day laborer after his death, but the income was not enough and she turned towards the sex trade in order to provide for her family. Leela doesn’t remember much about her childhood, but she can still hear the derogatory comments her mother’s customers made towards her and her siblings. She remembers the many times they would abuse her. And, she remembers that her mother was too afraid to speak up, afraid of angering the customer if she told them to stop…and so this abuse continued for several years.
Leela’s mother became ill a few years ago and she was not able to bring in as much income as before. She began to encourage Leela to accept her customers advances and offers. After several months, though, Leela was being pressured daily to join the sex trade; she feared that she would soon be forced into it and would endure the same suffering she saw in her mother.
Leela ran away from home one night with the help of a local NGO; they brought her to a Sudara partner center in search of safe housing and skills-training. She has started to make many friends at the centers and she told us she is excited about her graduation.
To further support Sudara's mission, consider a coordinating set of Punjammies!