Dignity is defined in the Oxford Dictionary as ‘true worth’.
To give people dignity is to acknowledge their worth and to have dignity is to know our own true worth. So many individuals are robbed of their dignity as they are bought and sold as products, trafficked in the sex trade, in forced labour, domestic servitude and other forms of modern-day slavery, suffering rape and violence on a daily basis.
There are estimated to be 35 million in slavery in the world today. Fifty per cent of these are children. Seventy per cent are female. Only one per cent are ever rescued.
I get frustrated at my lack of ability to do anything about this. I don’t have any qualifications to help – I’m not a lawyer, a social worker, or a detective. I don’t have massive resources. I do love writing. I have a desire to do something, but often don’t know what that thing is.
A couple of weeks ago all my plans for December involved the usual Christmas preparations and celebrations. Then I came across the Dressember campaign on my Instagram feed. I watched a TED talk by Blythe Hill, the founder of Dressember. I identified with her – feeling unqualified to make any difference to the situation yet a fire inside when these things were mentioned. Less than an hour later I had signed up to her idea, to wear a dress every day in December. That is something I can do.
This doesn’t sound like a big deal for someone who loves dresses, and in many ways it isn’t (except when it is -11 and below outside), but the point is to celebrate femininity and to advocate for the dignity and freedom of all women. An encouraging thing is that within a few days three friends had joined me so we have a team – Freedom Frocks On.
31 days of dresses lie ahead to raise awareness of the problem of human trafficking and to raise money for two great organizations who work to combat that injustice – International Justice Mission and the A21 campaign. These two organizations work to prevent trafficking, to bring justice for the victims of violent injustice, to rescue people from these situations and to look after survivors, to give them a future.
I do not love fundraising, it puts me right out of my comfort zone, because what if no one gives anything? But then again what if people do? There’s a chance to help make a difference, even a little dent in this massive problem means freedom even if it is one person at a time.
If you’d like to you can read more about Dressember and see my fundraising page at this link, All dressed up for justice. Feel free to give a little if you are able!
Thank you for reading.