A few months ago we were approached by Linnea and Danielle, the creators of Raw Threads, a nonprofit organization dedicated to giving people a voice through drawing and fashion. Each season they ask someone associated with a cause to submit a drawing, which Raw Threads puts on fashionable t-shirts to sell online. The majority of the profits go to the organization affiliated with the cause.
“With Raw Threads we wanted to reach out to a younger generation and encourage them to raise awareness about the obstacles people face every day, using something almost everyone cares about: their clothes. We were particularly drawn to working with an organization in NYC due to its status as the ‘Fashion Capital of the World,’ but also as a city of harsh realities, remarkable culture, and raw beauty,” they said.
Linnea and Danielle were aware of the homelessness crisis currently gripping America, particularly youth – tonight nearly 22,000 kids will sleep in emergency shelters in NYC – and so wanted to feature the drawings of a homeless child.
According to the pair, “We were eager to work with the Coalition because the homelessness of countless Americans is an issue we deeply care for, and because we firmly believe that these men, women and kids need an additional voice in society.” And so the Coalition was invited to participate in this innovative project.
We immediately turned to our Bound for Success afterschool program, which had been working with a talented 8th grader named Chris – an inveterate fan of drawing and art, who was always game for a challenge.
Chris created a series of amazing drawings representing what life is like for a kid in NYC living in and out of homeless shelters. Those moving drawings are now t-shirts you can buy online.
When we asked Chris what it was like to see his drawings on a t-shirt, he shouted gleefully, “It’s exciting to see my drawings on a t-shirt! Can’t wait to wear one!”
Linnea and Danielle added, “We hope that the powerful images this young boy drew of his struggles will inspire people throughout the world to wear his shirt and give him a voice – because in the end, an image says more than a thousand words.”
We are grateful to Raw Threads for their support of homeless New Yorkers in this effort. You can get your own shirt and help support Bound for Success and other Coalition programs by clicking here.