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Celebrating Sustainable Fashion at DREFF 2016

September 10, 2016

Santo Domingo – The sixth edition of the DREFF, taking place between September 13-18 in eleven cities around the Dominican Republic, has planned a large celebration to support and encourage sustainable fashion, which seeks to respect humans as well as the environment. At the inauguration, to be held September 13 at the Palacio del Cine-Agora Mall in Santo Domingo, the DREFF has organized a full program that will celebrate and welcome, in grand style, a movement that emerged globally several years ago and which seeks to encourage a more transparent and mutually supportive fashion industry, which gains more followers everyday.

The film chosen for the opening ceremony, The True Cost, is about clothing: the clothes we use, the people who make them and the impact the industry is having on the planet. The price of clothing has declined over the past several decades while human and environmental costs have dramatically increased. The True Cost is a revolutionary documentary that reveals this hidden story and asks us to consider: who really pays the price for our clothing?

During the inauguration gala,  DREFF 2016 will pay special recognition to Fashion Revolution, two of whose representatives will be present for the opening ceremony and throughout the entire Film Festival. Marina Spadafora is the coordinator in Italy of Fashion Revolution and a member of its Global Advisory Committee and Zaida Goveo Balmaseda is their coordinator in Puerto Rico

Over the past 6 years, Gina Constanza has developed a passion for eco-fashion and has organized clothing exchanges in New York, because there is nothing more sustainable than second-hand clothing. Her vision is to work with independent designers who are environmentally friendly and more sustainable.  In 2011,  Eco Fashion in The Park emerged in New York City and soon became a permanent happening. The intention is to raise awareness among teens and young adults and to motivate them to take part in seeking positive social change within their different communities.

Gina Constanza will bring some of her designs from New York, which will be showcased during the gala by models from the Dominican Modelle Academia de Refinamiento with makeup by Aurora Makeup. ReCrearte, an initiative of DREFF and GFDD/ Funglode will provide fashion accessories made from recycled materials to complement the clothing being modeled. There will also be an exhibition of these products, available for purchase, in the lobby of the Palacio del Cine. Bertha Santana, ReCrearte program coordinator, and a group of female entrepreneurs who have learned to create these objects with Ms. Santana, will be present at the event.

Definition of sustainable fashion and the Fashion Revolution

The Sustainable Technology Education Project (STEP) defines sustainable fashion as the production of clothing and accessories while maintaining respect for the environment, the health of consumers and conditions of those employed in the industry.

Fashion Revolution is a global movement that began in 2013, following the collapse of the Rana Plaza complex in Dhaka, Bangladesh, in which 1,134 people died and more than 2,500 were injured. In commemoration of this day, every year on April 24th, Fashion Revolution gathers people from around the world to use the power of fashion to change the story for the people who make the world’s clothing.

There are already more than 80 countries that form part of this organization. This worldwide movement, comprised of industry leaders, members of the press, activists, academics, artists both within and outside the fashion sector, seeks to be the catalyst that brings together the fashion community in general – including its entire value chain – and encourage it to question, raise standards, and create conditions to generate change that will make a difference. We need an industry that values people, the environment, creativity and profits, all to an equal extent.

During the 6 days of the film festival, GFDD/Funglode’s ReCrearte will exhibit clothing, accessories and handcrafts while promoting sustainable fashion and recycling in the country. The exhibition, “EXPO RD Recicla – A Space to Exhibit Sustainable Fashion,” will be held at the Gallery in Funglode. This is an excellent opportunity to show that not everything tossed out is trash and how things can be reimagined and transformed into something inspiring and beautiful. The ReCrearte exhibit at Funglode is free and open to the public throughout the entire film festival.

ReCrearte works with disadvantaged members of the community who are trained in the art of recycling and creating objects from trash, while at the same time they learn how to create an alternative source of income. The program is based on the “three golden rules” or the 3Rs for proper solid waste management: reduce, reuse and recycle. ReCrearte workshops demonstrate and underscore the idea that recycling waste and transforming it into art strengthens both individuals and their communities.

About the DREFF
Since its creation in 2011, the Dominican Republic Environmental Film Festival has been providing Dominicans with a platform of knowledge and debate on the environment and sustainable development, as well as examples of best practices to achieve them, while celebrating the unique beauty and natural heritage of the Dominican Republic. With a wide selection of documentaries and numerous panel discussions, workshops, seminars and community activities, the DREFF seeks to promote dialogue and the exchange of knowledge and experience with the goal of encouraging Dominicans to take measures that will contribute to the appreciation, conservation and sustainable use of the country’s unique natural resources. /
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Since the inception of the Dominican Republic Environmental Film Festival (DREFF) in 2011, Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) has created and developed 6 year-round programs that make a significant contribution to the sustainable development of the Dominican Republic.

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