UK Based Fashion Designer Hosts Fundraising Gala ‘A Taste of West Africa’ To Empower Women in Rural Sierra Leone
UK Based Sierra Leoneon Fashion Designer Hosts Fundraising Gala ‘A Taste of West Africa’ To Empower Women in Rural Sierra Leone
Isatu Harrison, Founder and Head Designer of IZELIA has always had a passion for the empowerment of the women of Sierra Leone and the women of the African continent as a whole. It makes perfect sense therefore that she would join forces with an impactful NGO to make a change using diaspora networks in the UK.
Kenenye Initiative for National Development (KIND) and The IZELIA fashion brand unite to mark Black History Month 2016 by collaborating to support and promote the welfare, enterprise and fashion of Sierra Leone’s women.
Established in 2014, KIND is a locally registered Non-Governmental Organisation in Sierra Leone, which provides microfinance and agricultural support to women leaving in the rural in Sierra Leone. In May 2016 KIND supported the establishment of 15 groups of Village Savings and Loan Association (VSLA), groups of 25 members each in Bonthe District. All the women were trained and supported with material and finance to start up. By May 2017 KIND intends to launch 30 additional group saving schemes making it a total of 45 VSLA groups.
IZELIA is a contemporary fashion brand founded by Isatu Harrison and inspired by her Sierra Leoneon heritage. “I intend to inspire and assist women in rural Sierra Leone, be a voice for these women and young creatives. Whilst the brand is becoming well entrenched in the UK, as an African, I feel I have a role to play in the economic development of my continent. Through Izelia, I wish to invest long-term in Sierra Leone’s private sector and I am interested in developing manufacturing, as well as production factories and establishing additional outlets in Africa.” – Isatu Harrison, Founder of IZELIA.
The primary objective of ‘A Taste of West Africa’ is to raise funds for the charity KIND. The charity aims to empower women in rural Sierra Leone by providing them with the financial support necessary to launch and grow new businesses.
The IZELIA fashion label will showcase the evolution of West African fashion designs over the last 50 years. IZELIA works with Sierra Leone based businesses supported by KIND and all the clothes which will be shown use fabrics and designs produced by these businesses. Sophie Walker, the leader of the Women’s Equality Party will be the keynote speaker on the day. Isatu has been working with the Women’s Equality Party on their #NoSizeFitsAll Campaign which challenges the fashion industry’s representation of women’s body images.
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‘A Taste of West Africa’ will be at the OXO Tower Wharf, Second Floor, Barge House Street, South Bank, London SE1 9PH on Saturday 22nd October 12, 2016 from 1900-Midnight.
Eventbrite ticket link: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/a-taste-of-west-africa-tickets-27396964057