A crowdsourced clothing line relies on cognitive surplus among the creative community to benefit survivors.
Humanitarian collective The Blind Project is launching Be a Biographer, an invitation to the creative community to help tell the stories of human trafficking survivors using design. The selected designs will appear on Biographe, an open-source fashion line produced by survivors.
Proceeds from sales of the clothes will be channeled back into The Blind Project, supporting victims and survivors with training and employment on sustainable living wages. The project also aims to raise awareness of what continues to be a criminal epidemic, particularly in areas like Southeast Asia. However, the impact of this abomination also impacts each of our proverbial backyards – an estimated 600,000 to 820,000 people, including children – are trafficked annually across international borders.
The project is accepting submissions until September 15th. 15 finalists will then be selected according to user votes. The panel of judges, which includes Alex Bogusky and activist Somaly Mam, will select three grand winners whose designs will be produced by now fairly employed survivors.
We found this to be a great example of what Clay Shirky refers to as cognitive surplus, and how it can tapped into for design for good.