Yesterday, after about 12 hours spent travelling and purchasing clothes (by the 100 lbs!) from a warehouse in the city of Matagalpa, the Women’s Association of Matiguas officially opened its used clothing collective. The power of informal networks in this community never ceases to amaze me; people began arriving to rummage through the massive piles of clothing even before we had them all counted and price. While the high demand for clothes resulted in some confusion, it definitely bodes well for the future of the collective. After over 4 exhausting hours of sales, we were left with about half of the clothing, which the women will continue to sell in different neighborhoods for the next few weeks.
What I’m enjoying most about this project is how much it’s not my project. What I mean is that, while I (and Mac) have certainly provided the economic support necessary to begin the project and I play a part in its implementation, the women I’m working with cultivated the idea of the used clothing collective and worked tirelessly to ensure that it goes smoothly, all with the greater goal of constructing a safe space for women in mind–this work is really theirs. And now, without further ado, pictures: