Fashion is often charged guilty when it comes to sidelining feminism and addressing women’s issues. This time though, the WEvolve program is turning tables and drawing from the power of fashion to address the same issues it’s guilty of! WEvolve has roped in ace designer Manish Malhotra in association with the Lakmé Fashion Week to endorse the issue through his ‘Blue Runway’ collection. As an extension to that association- amidst all the fashion week chaos and the glitterati; fashion prodigy Manish Malhotra took time to address this crucial cause.
Cutting the ribbon on the WEvolve Campaign to combat gender violence, Manish Malhotra with Mission Impossible actress Rosario Dawson, addressed a press conference to launch WEvolve, a global campaign and program aimed at empowering young men and women to challenge norms that lead to gender violence.
We at BeBeautiful – equally passionate about the issue- quizzed Malhotra and Dawson on what was WEvolve aiming to do to empower women.
BB: Violence stems from dependability and the fact that power is misconstrued by men. How do you intend to address that issue through fashion?
Manish Malhotra: “This is a different show even for me because I haven’t done anything like this before. However some 3 years ago in an NGO in a small village of ‘Misha’ there were only forty working women and today that number has changed to two hundred! To give them work was about self realization and not charity. And I want to do a lot more of this in my journey of Indian fashion”.
Rosario Dawson: “We own a fashion company in Ghana called Studio189 and we use it for what we call ‘Fashion Rising’ because we recognize that fashion, when used in the right way, can be critical. By giving people work, opportunity and recognition we address their poverty, their issues of violence. It is difficult to raise funds, it is not sustainable. So we work in partnership with them, we give them access, creativity and work to amplify their values and talents and let them be a part of the conversation,” she said.
BB: What can we expect at the ‘Blue Runway’ collection with regard to WEvolve campaign?
Manish Malhotra: “Tonight’s show, while it is all about fashion and global influences, is also about positively taking 2 minutes of your time to address the issue.
Rosario Dawson: “Also – We at WEvolve believe that men are integral to the change process. I mean women aren’t hurting themselves so understanding what drives men to use violence is central to halting it.”