Dyeing to Change

In 2014, an estimated 5678 women worked as prostitutes in the city. 

There were 160 victims trafficked into the city that. Year; including 90 children.  

You might wonder where - some place on the other side of the world?

No, this is Louisville, Kentucky.  My hometown.

One of Ibu's great collaborators is Anchal Project, two designers bringing creative work and living wages to former sex workers in India.  The two designers are sisters who happen to live in Louisville.  

It seemed only fitting to Maggie and Colleen that they bring their message home.

When the Mayor of Louisville offered a competitive prize for the best use of vacant lots in the city, Maggie and Colleen proposed a garden of plants with which to dye.  And their idea won.

Since then, the Anchal Project has not only built a thriving garden on the empty plot above, they have trained women formerly trapped in the sex trade how to dye using the plants of their garden.  They've taught others how to sew.  The great embroidery brought stateside from India gets dyed and constructed right there in Louisville, making sisters of the artisans in two cities. 

When I saw the colors coming from this dye garden saturating silk bandanas, coloring lives, and doing so in the place I come by. . . I was all tied up in hope for this global sisterhood.  

. . .

All the best,

Susan Hull Walker