Posted on January 30, 2014
Shopping is always guaranteed to make you feel good, but our Key To Freedom line goes one step further by supporting a charity close to our hearts. Last season our exquisite Key To Freedom scarves went a long way to helping vulnerable women in India, so we couldn’t be happier to be introducing a brand new collection.
Offering gorgeous pyjama sets and kimono dressing gowns in vibrant pinks and vivid blues, all proceeds will go towards the Women’s Interlink Foundation, an initiative that provides training, skills and safe houses for vulnerable young women from West Bengal.
What to know more? Read on as we speak to Key To Freedom‘s inspirational founder Aloka Mitra.
What is your vision for Key To Freedom?
We want Key To Freedom to bring about the empowerment of vulnerable women and girls. The vision is to allow them to become self-reliant and to carve out a new life for themselves.
How does it work?
The rescued women are given a roof over their heads at one of the Women’s Interlink Foundation’s shelter homes. Here they’re trained up with marketable skills like hand block printing and tailoring, which allows them to make the beautiful garments sold through Topshop and earn a living for themselves.
What are the biggest lessons you’ve learned from founding the charity?
I’ve learned that establishing links with the right people and organisations at every stage is vital in achieving our targets.
What advice would you give to entrepreneurs starting out today?
There is no substitute for dedication and the will to make a difference!
What are you most proud of?
I am so proud of the attitude and efficiency of the girls, their enthusiasm and hard work in completing the orders. Also the wonderful support, affection and kindness of Prince Andrew and Duchess of York (who helped set up the initiative) and the fantastic ladies I have met at Topshop in London.
How has the money raised from last season’s scarves changed the lives of the girls?
The girls have improved hugely. Their understanding of quality and time management has improved and their confidence levels have increased. They look forward to new orders with great enthusiasm. They are so vibrantly happy now and are thinking of their future positively. They now have their own bank accounts and can buy themselves stylish clothing, cosmetics and jewellery. Their smiles are truly rewarding!