The American criminal justice system currently holds nearly 6.5 million people in its claws, and it imprisons more people per capita than any other country in the entire world.
I didn’t really think about what mass incarceration meant on a micro level until the fall of 2016 when I volunteered for the first time at Books Through Bars, a non-profit in West Philly. My time there convinced me that I wanted to do more to resist a criminal justice system that by design is unfair- I wanted to give hope more directly.
This is the beauty of Grant Blvd.
As a sustainable brand, Grant Blvd's mission is to do what’s good for people and to do what’s good for the planet. To accomplish this, we design womenswear from a place of love, but also from a place of logic. Clothing made with a sense of environmental and social consciousness is the best kind of style to us.
In our first design collection we use discarded men’s shirts- which means no new chemicals, pesticides, or water use, and we reconstruct them. This is how we define sustainability in this collection. In the process, we do something that has a positive impact on the planet and that creates a pathway to supporting incarcerated people. What’s more, for every top that you buy, a book will be sent to Books Through Bars. Just as soon as we're able, our other major goal is to give returning citizens at an opportunity to begin rebuilding their lives by teaching them how to sew, giving them jobs in manufacturing, and paying them the fair wage that workers overseas are denied, in a studio, right here in Philadelphia. In the future, we plan to launch collections that use other more sustainable fabrics such as hemp, linen, and silk.
We welcome your support in bringing to market incredibly stylish designs that not only do no new harm, but that create careers for returning citizens- folks we know who are in need of opportunities to begin again.
The money you contribute will be used to:
- Lease a manufacturing space
- Purchase manufacturing equipment
- Train 5 returning citizens in industrial sewing
- Purchase essential technology
We invite you to not only follow our journey, but to share our brand story and mission with your friends, colleagues, and loved ones. We also invite you to help us not only meet, but to exceed our goal.
Change will require that we all pitch in what we can, and change is what you have the opportunity to help create today. This isn’t only a fashion brand: it’s a movement for people from all across the country who want to see and support social innovation. And we couldn’t be more grateful to have each one of you standing beside us.
Team Grant Blvd