Friday, November 30, 2012

Why Organic Cotton?

I grew up and live in beautiful Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. We love our warm humid temperatures. So, cotton is the fabric of choice here because it’s breathable and light.
Conventional cotton is everywhere. In our bath towels, beach towels, table clothes, bedding, t-towels, general clothing,T-shirts, underwear and more. I was horrified to find that a fabric so loved and desired, because it’s a “natural” fiber, could be so devastating to the planet and directly effect our health.
Conventional cotton is chemically dependent, hooked on pesticides and
fertilizers to grow and accounts for 10% of all agricultural chemicals, and 25% of all
pesticides used worldwide every year.
One T-shirt = 0.4 kg of cotton which draws on 2000 litres of water.
One T-shirt can have 150 gms or 1/3 of a pound of pesticides in it.

Certified Organic Cotton is grown using methods and materials that have a low impact on the environment.
Less water is used to grow organic cotton but it is a thirsty crop.
The most environmentally and economically sustainable cotton is a
rain-fed crop grown in sub-tropical countries with good rain fall.
Areas of India, Peru, Tanzania, and USA, and Australia, are just a few, out of
24 countries world wide, who now grow Organic Cotton.
The production systems of organic cotton:
are labour intense with a hands on approach to pest control
replacing the need for toxic pesticides;
they minimise the use of fertilizers and replenish & maintain soil fertility.
All of this means: 
no harm to the earth, no harmful chemicals, no harm to the growers, no toxic water waste, no harm to the millers, no harm to the manufacturers, no harm to all of us who wear organic cotton.
It's a moral fiber!

I would love to know your favourite cotton item and why you love them?

x Louise

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Encouraged by Her Courage

November has been such a beautiful month for me. 
 I had the opportunity to meet with a group of sweet high school girls right at the start of the month. The interact group from Kedron State High School invited me to speak with them about my passion for the girls in Cambodia and the Somaly Mam Foundation.

Two weeks after that memorable afternoon (and only two weeks ago), I was honoured to see Somaly Mam again, in person. Somaly Mam's smile to so strong, so powerful that you forget that she ever suffered as a sex slave. She was so generous with me as I shared with her my encounter with the Kedron State High School girls. I told her "We love your girls, so much, there's a whole number of ladies in Brisbane, who passionately care for your little girls."

Somaly Mam spoke with delight about her girls, she share how they're in the process of learning to forgive. 

"They are forgiving their past to embrace their future"

Every time I meet with Somaly Mam I'm truly encouraged by her courage and the courage of her girls to live again, to laugh and to play over and over, it reminds me that there is no excuse to ignore joy.

Somaly Mam and I in Melbourne, November 2012

These girls had raised over $150 for the Somaly Mam foundation. When I first heard of this I shed a tear, this is the amount it would cost to purchase a girl out of the horror of sexual slavery.

Somaly Mam receiving the hand written card that the Kedron State High School girls asked me to give her.