Local Photographer Partners with Human Rights Group

By: April Newell

A partnership between a photographer and a network with a mission to stop human trafficking held an art show in the upper lounge of a local café on Sunday.

Esther Chen is a local photographer who focuses on shooting expressive, romantic, and dramatic images for a good cause.  When she discovered Nomi Network, she pursued a partnership to support their mission of stopping human trafficking and displayed her work at the Globe Café on Boylston Street.

“I contacted Nomi Network about photographing their products because I believe that human trafficking is an important issue that needs to be brought to light,” said Chen.  “I want to use my talent for a good cause.”

Chen partnered with Nomi Network non-profit organization that works to strengthen social enterprises providing job opportunities for survivors and women at risk of human trafficking.  The organization employs survivors to create eco-friendly handbags and accessories and spreads the word about human trafficking and how to put a stop to the slave trade.  Chen asked her female friends to model the handbags for her photography project.

“I’ve never modeled before, but I decided that this would be a great opportunity to advocate for an important cause, said Gloria Jensen, model.  “The best part for me is knowing that the proceeds for these bags all go to helping employ women.”

In 2012, Nomi Network was named a winner in the category of One to Watch- innovation at the Ethical Fashion Forum Source Awards and was awarded the Top-Rated List for 2012 by GreatNonprofits. The “Buy Her Bag, Not Her Body” product was created to give  women the opportunity to vote with their dollar against slavery and for the empowerment of vulnerable women and is available online.

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