Inspired to make a difference, Mabel Suglo founded Dignified Wear, a Ghanaian-based social enterprise passionate about connecting persons with disabilities and rural women with resources to rise above the poverty threshold.
Mabel’s inspiration came from her late grandmother, who defied the odds of being stigmatized and marginalized despite her leprosy condition, to cultivate food crops on a piece of land to feed her children and grandchildren. Mabel’s grandmother was a single mother who proved that DISABILITY is not INABILITY, and her courage birthed Dignified Wear to be an employer of persons with disabilities and rural women, just like her.
In Ghana, there are two million unemployed rural women and five million Persons with Disabilities (PWDs), of which 25% are physically challenged. These marginalized and vulnerable groups of people have difficulty in making ends meet; and often resort to begging on the streets in cities, endangering themselves to accidents, health hazards and social vices.
Meanwhile, two million tons of used car tires are discarded in unfriendly manners on the landfills of Ghana annually, posing both human and environmental health hazards to the people living in these communities.
Dignified Wear’s vision is to be a leading trainer and employer of physically disabled and rural women artisans in Ghana. Its mission is to be a leading institution in job creation for the less privileged in Ghana and an eco-cultural producer in Africa.
To address these two societal problems, Dignified Wear empowers rural women and PWDs to upcycle these trash into treasures. The result is a collection of handcrafted durable, versatile and fashionable shoes, handbags, locally woven fabrics and traditional jewelry.
Carrying the message ‘DISABILITY is not INABILITY’, Dignified Wear allows women and PWDs to maximize their career potential and take steps towards their long term financial and personal well-being.