Last night I had the opportunity to attend the Heshima Kenya Fashion Challenge at Room 1520 in the heart of Chicago’s West Loop. The HK Fashion Challenge was created to support the Maisha Collective in Nairobi, Kenya. Ten local fashion designers were given a handmade scarf and allotted 2 weeks to design a dress. Their designs were gorgeous, but they were working with pretty incredible textiles:) The Maisha Collective—Maisha meaning “life” in Swahili–empowers graduates of Heshima Kenya’s Girl’s Empowerment Program through economic opportunities to rebuild their lives with peace and dignity. The participants are refugee girls and young women from DR Congo, Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan, and Burundi. By managing a business collective that designs and produces a line of unique tie and dye scarves, members gain life-long business and marketing skills that develop their confidence and prepare them for future independence. The power of a purchase inspires their journey to support, empower, and ultimately protect other young refugee women. All profits are reinvested into the Maisha Collective and support the participants’ success in Heshima Kenya’s programs.
What a great night!
For more information about Heshima Kenya visit: http://heshimakenya.org/