Photos by  Even Keel Imagery
I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass.
— Maya Angelou

Hello, Dressember. We have arrived.

Every year the women of MHT band together to use our feminine power and fashionable prowess to raise awareness and funds for the Dressember Foundation and for issues impacting the inherent dignity of women, specifically, women vulnerable to sexual exploitation and trafficking. This year we decided to expand our impact and our fundraising goal. We wanted to dig even deeper; to utilize our creative energy, personal stories and style, to inspire you, educate you, and possibly move you to give.

Given that this has been both a difficult and empowering year for women, we wanted to use our creativity, presence, and voice to continue to challenge the boundaries of how women are defined. Enter MHT's Women Are campaign. In December, as we are raising money for the Dressember Foundation, you will hear from each our clinicians on just what they think WOMEN ARE.

In addition, our team has upped our fundraising goal to $6000. I'm sweating just thinking about it. But then again, with this group of mighty women, what's to fear? Follow along and help us smash our goals!

Why?

Because the issue of human and sex trafficking is both a pervasive and deeply local issue. California and specifically, Los Angeles County, houses the largest foster care system in the US. In 2012, studies estimate that between 50 and 80 percent of commercially sexually exploited children (CSEC) in California are or were formally involved with the child welfare system. 58% of 72 sexually trafficked girls in Los Angeles County’s STARS Court in 2012 were foster care kids. This is an issue deeply personal to me as adoptive parent, as a foster/adoption professional, and as a female business owner in Los Angeles. I'm grateful to be teaming with the strong-minded women of MHT to do something about it.

Here's how you can participate:

Give! Visit our Dressember page and make a donation. It's that simple and no sum is too small. Truly.

Follow! Be sure to follow us on Instagram and our blog throughout the month of December. Of course, we will be documenting our fierce fashion choices but our deepest intention is to empower and educate. We will be resurrecting our #badasswomenofhistory series on Instagram. We are also starting a new series called “Women Are” where you will hear from some of our therapists who participated in a photo shoot embodying the statement "Women Are...". Personally, I found this to be such a deeply intimate and inspiring project to work on with my team. We really hope you enjoy.

Share!  Help us spread the word. You can do this by sharing our social media posts or links to our Dressember fundraising campaign page.

Here’s to another year of fierce fashion and deep musings from badass women getting the job done. Let’s do this!

-Michelle


Michelle Harwell, PsyD, LMFT is an expert trainer, respected speaker, and licensed therapist in trauma and attachment. She is noted for her specialization in areas of development, attachment, trauma, and neuroscience, and her ability to communicate complex topics with clarity and humor.