Mission in Action Fashion Fundraiser

  • The List
  • 9 April 2007

Mission In Action Fashion Show

Cargo, Edinburgh, Sat 21 Apr

Fashion Fundraiser

‘Living in this country, we’ve just got no concept of how hard it is for people out there,’ says Annalese McDermott, director of Edinburgh modelling agency Stolen, and co-founder of the UK branch of Mission in Action. Mission in Action was set up to fund the Nakuru Baby Orphanage in Kenya, and last year, after raising over £15,000 with a charity fashion show, McDermott and co-founders Carrie Nicol and Susi Conchar visited the village to see their work in action. They’re hoping to replicate the effort with another event this fortnight.

‘It’s amazing to see the money you’ve raised actually going somewhere - often with bigger charities you wonder if it isn’t all being swallowed up in admin costs. It’s a family-run business and they’ve got 20 babies and children under five now, rescued from poverty or orphaned by HIV.

‘Our first fashion show was all pulled together through the efforts of families and friends, and that’s what made it magical. There’s a really lovely community of people in Edinburgh. It’s such a good cause, and we discovered that people really do want to help; often they just aren’t sure how.’ McDermott’s friends and business contacts - people in their 20s and 30s, working in fashion, clubs and music in Edinburgh - have contributed clothes for the shows, prizes for the raffles, and organisational talent for the whole event. Local shops Totty Rocks, Boudiche and 21st Century Kilts are donating clothes for the event, and Joseph Malik will be DJing. ‘All of the designers featured are locally based; all of our models are Scottish. At the same time as we’re raising money and awareness about the way things are in Africa, we’re using it as a really good platform for local talent,’ says McDermott. She doesn’t see any contradiction in bringing fashion and Third World poverty into close association, either. ‘I wanted to be involved in the best way I could, which is through my business. When you see exactly how hard it is for these people, you just want to - have to - help. People struggling to feed their kids, families cramped into tiny huts, starving.

‘But then you go to the orphanage,’ she pauses, smiling, ‘and it’s fantastic. Just a really happy home.’

Tickets for the Mission In Action fashion show at Cargo cost £10. For further information please see www.missioninaction.co.uk

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