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Underwear for Hope old

"When you educate a woman, everything changes."

Naja is committed to the empowerment of women.

Through our Underwear for Hope program and our partnership with the Golondrinas Foundation in Colombia, Naja trains single or head of household mothers to sew. Naja then employs them so that they can help themselves and their children. When you educate a woman, everything changes.

"Buy a bra, give a single mother work."

How it works.

A percentage of every purchase you make goes toward supporting our entrepreneurial sewing program for women through the Golondrinas Foundation. And for every bra purchase you make, you contribute directly to the employment of a single mother. How it works: When you buy a bra, Naja gives you a lingerie wash bag so that you can wash your undergarments. Each lingerie bag is made at home by one of the women that we employ through Underwear for Hope.


Underwear for Hope Stories

Maria Jaramillo, 36 years old
Barrio Caicedo, Colombia

My name is Maria, I am one of the “displaced” in Colombia—after gangs killed my sister, I was forced to leave our village with my three girls and my sister’s two girls. The violence hit me very hard. I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to die, but I couldn’t because I had them to take care of. Now, I try to teach children about the violence and I have a group of about 50 kids. I cleaned up a little park around the corner and on weekends I turn it into an activity center—I teach the children to plant, we fry potato chips in kettles, and we draw. I really try to focus on the boys, because war is made by men. I make them draw flowers so that they understand that flowers are not just for girls. I tell them that just because their mothers mop it doesn’t mean that they can’t. I teach them that when they join gangs, they destroy entire families. And I teach them that one shouldn’t wait for things to be given to them, things should be earned. Sometimes I think I want to leave this neighborhood, it has become just as violent as where I used to be from. But, I can’t. The children, they need me. 

As of November 2013, Maria works full time through Underwear for Hope. She hopes to use what she earns to educate her daughters and her nieces and to build a play house in the park for her 50 children to play in.


Zulli Mosquera, 36 years old
Barrio Caicedo, Colombia

My name is Zulli, I am displaced from the Choco region of Colombia. I have four daughters, one of them is blind, deaf and mute and she has a developmental disability. Sewing has always been my dream. When I was about 7 or 8 years old, my aunt had one of those pedal operated sewing machines. I really wanted her to teach me how to sew but she wouldn’t let me touch it. So, I told her that one day I would own a sewing machine and have children. I would sew for my children and make them clothes and I would have my own business as a sewist. When we moved to Medellin, I applied for Project Fenix, a program for displaced persons that taught us business skills. They helped us finance a sewing machine. So now I have my sewing machine and I have my daughters. But, I have never sewed for anyone else. I’m not even sure what I’m about to get myself into, but I tell myself “Zulli, this has always been your dream.” So here I am. About to become a business woman. I am ready. 

As of November 2013, Zulli works full time out of her home sewing for Underwear for Hope. She hopes to use her earnings to educate her girls and to get a commercial sewing machine with more functionality. She has fulfilled her dream of being an entrepreneur.

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