The Red Sari, owned by Clinton School graduate Julie West (’09), was recently announced as the recipient of the Community Impact Award at the International Folk Art Market Dinner in Santa Fe, N.M.
Created in 2016 to highlight stories of success and inspiration, the Community Impact Award recognizes artists who positively contribute to social change in their communities.
West spent the summer of 2008 working with Rural Education and Development (READ) Nepal. Inspired by the country and its artisans, West returned after graduation to continue work with women in the Kathmandu Valley.
“My UACS International Public Service Project in Nepal gave me the opportunity to live out my dream: to work at the nexus of women’s empowerment, sustainability and folk art design,” West said. “I’m grateful.“
Their work launched The Red Sari, a socially responsible fashion design company that not only creates sustainable jobs for women in Nepal, but liberates them from lives of isolation and bestows status within communities.
She then put all her energy into creating a production center and a social enterprise, where recycled saris – those that are damaged and would otherwise be discarded – are transformed into gorgeous, wearable accessories. Red Sari provides employment to Nepalese women who work in all aspects of business, offering economic opportunities while preserving important textile traditions.
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