Podcast Ep. 9 THE STORY OF SLUMWEAR & THE POSSIBILITY PROJECT
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Do you love our MUSIC? It's by our friend Montaigne, who sang a special acoustic version of "Because I love You" just for us. It's from her album Glorious Heights. Montaigne is electrifying live - check here for a list of her upcoming Australian dates.
EPISODE 9 FEATURES KIM PEARCE & KATHERINE DAVIS OF THE POSSIBILITY PROJECT
What do you think is possible? How about impossible? Kim Pearce and Katherine Davis are living proof of the old adage: where there’s a will there’s a way. The Possibility Project [https://thepossibilityproject.com.au/], which they cofounded after meeting on the school run, “delivers social justice programs through the mindset of social entrepreneurship”.
What does that look like on the ground? Try their womenswear label Slumwear 108, and made in the slums of Jaipur in partnership with the NGO i-India. The number 108, in case you’re wondering, is considered sacred in may eastern religions and traditions. Ask Kim what it means to her and she says, “It’s all about spiritual completion.”
But these clothes and accessories aren’t some mystical idea – they are real. Whether it’s a jacket made from upcycled old saris or a string of silk covered beads, they offer measureable benefits to the people who make them, and to their communities.
How do you begin to set up a social enterprise? How do you keep it going? What qualities and resources do you need? These two demonstrate that it can be as simple as giving it, as we say in Australia, a red hot go. They insist that they are two ordinary mums, but their spirit and energy is obviously EXTRAORDINARY.
In this Episode, we discuss the politics of happiness, the practicalities of rethinking what’s conventionally deemed possible and how fashion can be a fabulous way to build bridges.
LINKS TO MAKE YOU THINK...
I-INDIA is a Jaipur-based charity that helps street children who've fallen through society's cracks. There are hundreds of thousands of street kids in Jaipur. Many become rag-pickers or beggars, or are forced into prostitution and domestic labour.
Founded by Prabhakar and Abha Goswami, a sociology professor and a local teacher, i-India offers creates opportunities for children to work in a different way through the production of jewellery and handicrafts, while providing a safe environment amongst teachers, staff and volunteers. They say, "These children live in a different world to the emerging middle class. Taken as a separate nation, they represent one of the neediest peoples on the planet."
OZ HARVEST is basically brilliant, so no wonder Kim mentions it as an example of rethinking the economy. It's a in the business of FOOD RESCUE. They collect excess food from commercial outlets and deliver it to more than 900 charities who support people in need across Australia. Since 2004, they've delivered over 60 million meals and saved more than 20,000 tonnes of food from ending up in landfill. And now it's a supermarket with a difference, too. Oz Harvest Market in Sydney is "stocked with produce that's been donated or would otherwise go to waste, but is perfectly edible. Based on a ‘take what you need, give if you can’ philosophy, our purpose is to make rescued food available to everyone, especially those who need it most."
MORAL FAIRGROUND aims to raise awareness and promote Fair Trade and Ethical Business in Australia through things like Fair Trade events and school leadership programs.
Kim, who used to be a high school economics teacher, now writes for the HuffPost UK, on things like leading with common sense, and "The Pandora Approach To Problem Solving, why think realistically when you can think creatively?"
"MONEY MAGNIFIES. IT CAN MAGNIFY YOUR HAPPINESS AND IT CAN MAGNIFY YOUR WOES. BUT IT IS NOT A SOLUTION." - KIM PEARce