EP #031- How to Build a Crowdfunding Movement One Dress at a Time: Blythe Hill of Dressember

Photo credit: Sarah Shreves

Blythe Hill is the Founder and CEO of Dressember, a crowdfunding foundation working to raise awareness and provide anti-trafficking grants for organizations who are working to end human trafficking.

What started as a personal style challenge in 2009 grew into an opportunity to align a cause near to Blythe's heart with wearing a dress. Blythe asked women (and men) to join her in wearing a dress, or a neck tie, everyday for the month of December in order to raise awareness and funds for human trafficking. These funds are then passed onto organizations that serve as boots on the ground to alleviate trafficking world-wide. Naturally, she named the campaign Dressember.

Blythe never had any intention of starting a nonprofit. She was happily working for a small trend forecast magazine, and leading a movement was the furthest thing from her mind. In this episode, Blythe and Nada get into the weeds discussing the different operational and fundraising structures of nonprofits. Blythe shares the importance of being self aware and identifying your strengths when determining how best to structure your own fundraising and operational efforts.

Although the Dressember campaign is a fun challenge, it highlights a very dark reality that exists in the US and throughout the world. Blythe shares the statistics of human trafficking and opens our eyes to just how manipulative and insidious these crimes of enslavement are.

Blythe opens up about the growth period Dressemeber is in and how they are working hard to increase their fundraising efforts to expand their network of grant partnerships. She reminds all those who want to start a life-changing organization that the day to day operations don’t always feel like you are saving the world, but growing the message and the organization are worth the hard work.


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Please follow Blythe @blythehill on Instagram and the Dressember Foundation @dressember on Instagram and Twitter. Be sure to check out Dressember Foundation’s website and consider joining this years campaign….

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