Jersey City Fashion Week (JCFW) kicks off on Wednesday, September 24, with events every night through Sunday, September 28. Organized by Desha Jackson Esq., through her Give to Live Community Foundation, a 501(c)3 charity, JCFW is an opportunity to celebrate fashion and entertainment, while also giving back to the community. Since its debut in September of 2012, JCFW has only grown in esteem, drawing the attention of emerging designers in the tri state area, as well as developing close ties with local businesses and the community at large.
Each year, JCFW strives to support different charities in concert with that year’s theme. In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, JCFW donated to Rising Tide Capital, a charity which helps marginalized populations start and grow successful businesses, as a way of helping rebuild the community. This past January, in correlation with the Super Bowl, they gave to Snowflake Youth Foundations, the Jersey City Recreational Foundation, and the Gridiron Group. This coming JCFW is making it its goal to help the sick and disabled, by donating to Mo’Hair Foundation, a group which provides wigs for cancer patients who’ve lost their hair in the course of treatment, and the Concordian Learning Center at St. Joseph’s School for the Blind.
More than just a fashion event, JCFW is glamour with a heart, driven by the spirit of giving. Speaking to Jackson, her dedication and passion really shines through. “What keeps me going, is that we make a difference in people’s lives, especially children,” she said. “I have love for them in my heart.”
JCFW has also partnered with the Keystone Club of the Boys and Girls Club of America. Their event, a children’s fashion show, supports Clothes for a Cause, a clothing drive to prepare underprivileged children for the fast approaching fall weather. More than charity, JCFW provides disadvantaged youths with something truly fun and productive in which to participate. “Many [children] were coming from very dire circumstances and they really looked forward to being involved in things like this,” said Jackson.
For everyone involved, from the designers to the models, JCFW is an opportunity for public service. Jackson said it best with this: “What they’re doing is not only getting exposure for themselves but being selfless, giving back to the community. That’s the point of this project…to give people an opportunity to be a part of giving back.”