Recovering from an eating disorder is no easy journey – that’s why this nonprofit wants to take some of the burden off of women’s shoulders.
The Garment Project is the only organization that helps empower women healing from eating disorders by rebuilding their wardrobe for free.
The Garment Project collaborates with health clinics across the country to connect with patients who are about to be released from treatment. The patients can then select new, name brand clothing that they like from the organization’s website. The Pittsburgh-based project then removes all tags, sizes, and measurements to remove possible stress before shipping them to the patient’s house. Anything they don’t like, they are free to send back.
The Garment Project’s co-founder Erin Drischler is already familiar with the struggles of eating disorders: she spent 14 years living with the illness until she finally started to heal.
“Every time I would go through treatment, I would lose all sense of self since my core beliefs about food and life were being stripped from me,” says Erin. “After months of hard work, I would return home to a closet full of clothes that at one point filled me with such (false) confidence, and I would find myself unconsciously striving to fit back into them.”
“My closet ranged in sizes, but a lot of them brought up negative memories. I could not afford to buy myself a brand new wardrobe [since] treatment is expensive. Trying on clothes was overwhelming and quickly revealed my new size. In addition to all the other pressures I faced upon arriving home, I didn’t have a chance. I knew I could not be alone in this aspect of my struggle, so I decided to launch Garment.”
Garment has started working with six different treatment facilities across the country since their debut in February, but they hope to expand as the project gains traction.
“We are not just giving clothing that fits, we are allowing our clients to build confidence in other aspects of their lives while tackling the worst part—body image.”
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Reprint (Photo by the Garment Project)