Dress With A Purpose

Dress With A Purpose

Fearless & Worthy #Dressember
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As a little girl, I didn't dream that I would help fight human trafficking or that it would become one of my passions. It wasn't something that I just woke up with one day. It honestly wasn't something I was really even aware of until my freshman year of college when I gave a speech on it in my oral communications class.


I was appalled when I learned of the numbers and statistics and horrors of human trafficking, but what really broke my heart wasn't the vast numbers, like the fact that there are over 28 million people enslaved worldwide. That there are more people enslaved than at any other time in human history or the fact that the average age of a girl being sex trafficked is only 12 years old. All of those things made me realize that it was an issue that needed to be stopped but what broke my heart was seeing the actual faces, the individual people. Putting real names and stories to the statistics.

Seeing the utter hopelessness in the eyes of women who have been enslaved for years who don't feel like they have any worth anymore. The little girls who should be laughing and twirling around in their pretty dresses, but instead their faces are full of fear and they're timid and scared instead of happy and carefree. They smile at me with their faces but their eyes tell a different story. One of pain and fear, brokenness and hopelessness. They've lost their joy and I see the utter despair in their countenance.
Once you're eyes have seen and your heart has been broken there is no choice but to use your voice to speak up for those who have none.

The issue is huge, complex and pervasive. It's effects spread from our backyards in Columbus to the streets of India. With human trafficking being such a massive problem it can seem overwhelming and even a daunting task to try and fight to end it. But we can take steps and do what we can to raise our voice for the voiceless and bring awareness to the issue because together we can accomplish much more than we can alone. As Desmund Tutu says


"Do a little bit of good where you are. It is those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world."

So here's a small step you can take come participate in Dressember with me and my friends! It's simple- join our team, spread the word, make a donation and wear a dress every day for the month of December. Where we will advocate and raise money for the issue.

if you're a guy you can still participate-- you can help us spread the word, donate to a female friends' campaigns, or you can even commit to wearing a bow tie for the month and create your own campaign page, or hold a sign that says "Real men don't buy girls" and post it to your social media, tagging #Dressember.

In just 3 years Dressember has raised 1.5 million to help end human trafficking. Let's join in raising an even bigger voice this year! We're in it to end it! We believe in FEARLESSLY advocating because all people are WORTHY of dignity.

Follow the link below to donate or join our team: Fearless & Worthy https://support.dressemberfoundation.org/team/9815...

#Dressember

Cover Image Credit: Becca Catoe

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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A Glimpse Of My Adventure In Germany & Poland

This why everyone should study abroad.

Learism
Learism
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Two days ago, I arrived back in the States from a two-week study abroad trip to Germany and Poland. This trip was entitled Experiences in International Justice. On this trip, we studied the Holocaust and its consequences through the lens of criminal justice. This trip changed my life in so many ways.

Firs, I really connected with all the other students on my trip, so I know that I can find friendship and understanding in them because we shared this experience.

Secondly, I discovered a newfound respect for life and need to work towards a more just world through learning more about Adolf Hitler's Third Reich and the Holocaust. We visited three infamous concentration camps: Dachau, Sachsenhausen, and Auschwitz-Birkenau. I don't know if I can explain to you the emotions I experienced, but I would like to try since I think it is very important to share my experience with others. It was so surreal to be in a place where millions of innocent lives were taken away. Seeing where the many Jews, Roma, and many other groups slept, worked, suffered, and died really put my life into perspective.

It got me reflecting on what I have to be thankful for, and the problems that I feel are a too big deal to handle. Nothing I could ever go through can be compared to what those poor people went through. Because of this realization, I have become empowered to do what I can to help those who are suffering and who do not have anyone to stand up for them. I know I can't effect change all over the world, but I want to help others in any way I can, in my community and in my future career as a Forensic Psychologist, as well as with my friends and family.

I also have been inspired to be a torch-bearer for the memory of the victims as well as the Holocaust itself, so that something like it never happens again. Knowledge is power, and so being educated about what happened and how it happened can help us take a stand for what's right. Because not everyone has the privilege to travel to the concentration camps as I have so I have an obligation to share my experiences there with the world. I do not want the victims to disappear, from the Holocaust or any tragedy. From a criminal justice perspective, it was also very interesting to read more about the perpetrators, how normal people can be so violent and destroy fellow humans without remorse. I think it is beneficial to study them because it shows that anyone can become overwhelmed with power and let it go to their heads.

My trip to Germany and Poland was an amazing experience that expanded my mind and my world, inspired me to continue down my chosen career path, and gave me great friends. I hope that everyone has a chance to study abroad and always be curious and open-minded because it will do so much good for you.

Learism
Learism

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