Supporting refugees through fashion brand workshops
Ibukun Jesusanmi Baldwin is a young fashion designer active in Manchester, UK. She also works as a social worker and supports refugees through her fashion brand “Bukky Baldwin”.
She launched this brand in March 2019. A unique feature of this brand is that all items such as clothes and accessories are handmade by refugees, and a part of the profits is devoted to support language learning and others.
After graduating from Manchester Metropolitan University in the UK, Baldwin devised the support program and launched the business with the support of the university. She is resident at a weekly workshop at the “Whitworth Art Gallery”, a museum in Manchester, and teaches refugees how to make ceramics, accessories, and embroideries. This program will be held for three months, and participants can not only learn design and craft skills but also improve their language skills, which makes it easier for participants with these skills to find the next job.
She was recently honored at the Deutsche Bank Award for Creative Entrepreneurs (DBACE) held by Deutsche Bank for the purpose of supporting young creators and was granted £5,000 (approx. 665,000 yen) and business support. Bukky Baldwin just launched as a brand, not only started selling items on its website and Work Shop but also announced a collaboration with the Portuguese business shoe brand “Josefinas”. Josefinas is pursuing to handmade by shoemakers using traditional techniques and has developed support programs for women in developing countries.
Her goal is to extend this effort to the whole of the United Kingdom and to enable people throughout the country to grow in a sustainable way. In order to realize the goal, she wants to develop a hiring scheme that can provide more content-rich training and long-term support and to deliver this project to many people in collaboration with homeless charities.