There are all kinds of websites out there that advocate going on a shopping diet, simplifying, getting rid of the clutter in your life. But, mostly, they promote the simplicity in the name of calming your own life. Which is, for most, a good goal.
But could you wear the same thing for 180 days? That’s 6 months. One dress. Every day, no exceptions. Every time you want to buy something new, donate that money to others instead. Talk about simplicity…mind-boggling simplicity. My friend Amy is doing just that, and no, she’s not crazy. She is doing to raise awareness, money and hope for the forgotten.
I came to know Amy through her aunt, who is a good friend of mine. We were all in a fabulous book club together back in Toledo. (Those ladies are still going strong after a decade and I miss them dearly). The first thing to know about Amy is that she is a beautiful soul. And I don’t say that lightly. Actually I don’t think I’ve ever said that of anyone before. She has an ease about her that radiates warmth and kindness and is the kind of person you want to get to know.
Anyway, Amy came across this idea of wearing one dress for 6 months around the same time she became aware of The Daughter Project:
The Daughter Project is a non-profit organization in Northwest Ohio that exists to help girls recover from the trauma of sex trafficking and to help prevent others from being trafficked.
An idea to wear the dress to gain awareness for both the horrendous problem of sex trafficking in our state and raise funds for The Daughter Project was born. She slipped on her little gray t-shirt dress in November and hasn’t looked back. In addition to everything else Amy is also crazy creative; if anyone can rock a single dress for 180 days and look amazing it’s Amy.
She’s been able to raise a lot of awareness – she works on the campus of BGSU and lots of college students have been lending her accessories to jazz up her outfits. Friends are joining her for a month at a time in their own dress. Sororities have held yard-sales to raise money for The Daughter Project in Amy’s honor. All the news outlets in NW Ohio have picked up her story and it’s made its way through the wires to CNN.
Some facts to ponder:
– Nationwide as many as 300,000 underage girls are being sold for sex in America.
– The Trafficking Victims Protection Act provides federal money to care for foreign victims of sex trafficking but no federal money has gone to help American girls.
– According to the Ohio Trafficking Commission about 1,000 American-born children and about 800 immigrants are forced into the sex trade in Ohio every year.
– Because of weak state laws in Ohio the state is quick to label child prostitutes as delinquents and to incarcerate them, rarely looking further at the adults involved.
– Due to it’s proximity to Canada (Toronto is an arrival destination for international victims) Toledo ranks fourth in the U.S. in terms of arrests, investigations and rescue of domestic child-sex victims.
This is an issue I knew existed, but not until Amy embarked on her project did I know how dire the problem is. Nor did I understand how big of an issue it is here in Ohio.
I ask you to do 2 things – go give Amy some comment love and encouragement as she heads into the home stretch of her 180 days in her gray dress. And please consider skipping that next self-indulgent purchase at the Gap and instead donate to the Daughter Project (or any of the “kindred organizations” listed on their site).
All photos taken from Amy’s site with her permission