“In 2005, at Montclair High School in Montclair, New Jersey, three friends Elizabeth Eddy, Gabriela Graham, and Juliana Colangelo founded the Sisters on the Runway. They started this organization in hopes of raising awareness about domestic violence and how to prevent it. Eddy, Graham, and Colangelo thought of a way to fundraise for a local domestic violence shelter through the production of an annual fashion show. Since it’s founding, the original high school branch has hosted 6 fashion shows to benefit their local domestic violence shelter, Shelter Our Sisters in Hackensack, New Jersey [as of 2013].
Domestic violence often goes unnoticed and does not receive enough support or recognition from the media and society at large. According to the Joyful Heart Foundation, one in four women will be affected by domestic violence in her lifetime and that this issue has become the leading cause of injury to women. In an effort to change these odds, Sisters on the Runway was created to teach students the importance of social responsibility through the production of an exciting event open to their friends, family, and local community members. The organization offers a format for high school and college level students to design and execute their own fundraisers. This show brings people together for a night of fashion, entertainment, and fun, while the organization is substantially raising awareness of an overlooked issue and is initiating a conversation to spark advocacy.”
Revised May 7, 2013 Christine Cummings