The prominence of homelessness affects individuals and families within cities and communities nationwide. Specifically, New York City has experienced a devastating 115 percent increase in homelessness in just the past twenty years. The NYLON Project is a new initiative aimed to unify and encourage positive change within the metropolitan and the homeless community. Jordana Guimaraes, the founder of the NYLON Project, understands the project might not be the solution, but it is a huge step in the right direction.
The project will utilize social media to create a platform of experiences, messages and personal journeys by using the tag #ItCanBeYou. The intention of the tag is for everyone to share their connection to homelessness and any community involvement in aiding this demographic. This campaign will demonstrate the reality of homelessness and the difference in decision-making that could avoid or lead to a life without a home. The focus is to create an understanding of the circumstances that caused these individuals to become homeless and to eliminate judgment of their situations.
Influencers and celebrities have come together to spread awareness of the issue and committed their time to inspire change. Christina Milian and Jenni Farley (JWOWW) are just two of the twenty-five influencers who have dedicated their time in speaking out on behalf of the NYLON Project.
To launch the initiative, the NYLON Project hosted a New York Fashion Week event on February 7, 2017 at The Delancey. Guests enjoyed networking and live performances from the band FAULKNER, singer Che’Nelle, and The Voice season 11 contestant, Wé McDonald. A runway show highlighted the personal stories of homeless members within the New York community. All twenty-five influencers involved with the campaign modeled in the show, carrying cardboard signs with messages from homeless people written in black ink. The attire from the fashion show was sponsored by many chic brands including Anje Clothing, Belle Fare, Fair Harbor, JayDee, Eternal Springs, SCRD, Wild Mantle, SoFrancisco, Karli Buxton, The Valencia, Mana Made Jewelry, Lonewolf Collective, HERO New York, Conscious Step, Mr. Custom Made, ARMARIUM, House of Eleven and Alkemi Collective.