UPDATE 25/05/16: An urgent update to this post, I spoke to Liz the founder of Uplift Project, and she currently has 40,000 bras in storage in Melbourne and desperately needs help funding the shipment of these to PNG. For $10 you can help send 100 bras – please donate here!
A few years back, I helped a friend who was running a collection of new bras for women impacted by flooding in Fiji. Incredibly, the universe provided (as it so often does) and in addition to many friends and family donating to the cause, we were able to use donated cash to purchase bras via charity Project Now – a charity raising money to help women with addiction. So our money was able to help TWO very worthy causes! Together, we were able to send almost 100 brand new bras to that village in Fiji – it was a wonderful result! Here is a link to the blog post, and a cute picture of my kids (and neighbour) helping count the bras out…they are maybe having a bit too much fun trying them on.
I have since become aware of an ongoing bra recycle program, who need your help!
Uplift Project collect new and pre-loved bras for women in developing countries. Uplift Project collect bras in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, and distribute them to women in developing countries such as Fiji, Solomon Islands, Tonga, PNG, Cambodia, Sri Lanka and more. There are drop off locations all over Australia – see the full list here. To date they have collected and donated 1.3 million bras!!! AMAZING!
The Uplift Project website (which was updated only this week) is urgently seeking bras in all sizes 8- 18+, A-DD cup (in good condition, including crop top styles.) Also:
- Maternity / nursing bras including crop tops, ANY condition will do. If it will catch a leak it is better than nothing, which is the alternative.
- E cup plus, ANY size Likely to be the only properly fitting bras that a woman gets in her life.
- Mastectomy Bras and Breast Forms (prostheses)
- Swimwear, any size
- Underpants, new. In some places a girl without underpants does not go to school during her period.
So why bras?
“In the Solomon Islands it is quite difficult to access a comfortable bra. Some of the second hand shops sell bras but mostly women have to buy their bras from the Chinese Trade Stores. These bras have some problems; they come in smaller sizes, are made of nylon and perish quickly in tropical conditions. You cannot buy maternity bras or mastectomy bras in country. For the women to be given free bras is an unbelievable experience for all of them. Women feel a tremendous obligation to meet the needs of their families, and so for any woman in the village to spend money buying a bra for herself can almost be seen as an unforgivable sin. The priority for women’s spending is food and education needs of children.” – Rose Wale, 2012, Report of Bra Distribution, Solomon Islands.
There are lots of other ways you can help, that is, in addition to donating a bra! A $10 donation will help deliver 100 bras, host a bra collection – here are some tips on how to start a collection, become a drop off point or next time you are travelling overseas get in touch with Uplift Project and see if you can help deliver a load of bras!
Print a Uplift Project poster for your office:
Click to download Uplift Project Poster/Flyer (PDF format).
Click to download Uplift Project Poster/Flyer (MS Word format).