I started this Blog entry today, as we here at Mushpa + Mensa want to start backing charities we believe in. Every month we will give 10% of our income to a charity we pick each month and promote in our blog, newsletter and on our website. This is something we have wanted to do and in 2017 we are making it happen!
The first charity we are covering will be End the Backlog. It is a is a program of the Joyful Heart Foundation, a national non-profit organization founded by actress and activist Mariska Hargitay with the mission to heal, educate and empower survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence and child abuse, and to shed light into the darkness that surrounds these issues. We heard about this organization as Cara (me) is obsessed with, My Favorite Murder, a podcast by Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark about, you guessed it, murder. Each episode the girls tell each other their favorite tales of murder, and hear hometown crime stories from friends and fans. Check your anxiety at the door, ’cause Karen & Georgia are dying to discuss death. They gave 50% of their sales or MFM products for 1 month to End the Backlog.
In Joyful Heart Foundation‘s own words End the Backlogis the cornerstone of Joyful Heart’s Policy & Advocacy work, focuses on shining a light on the rape kit backlog in the United States. Our goal is to end this injustice by conducting groundbreaking research identifying the extent of the nation’s backlog and best practices for eliminating it; expanding the national dialogue on rape kit testing through increased public awareness, engaging communities and government agencies and officials; and advocating for comprehensive rape kit reform legislation and policies at the local, state and federal levels. Ultimately, we seek to change attitudes about sexual violence and abuse, educate the public, improve systems to lessen the trauma survivors experience and ensure greater access to justice for survivors.
With this new person, whose name I shall not speak, in office we must fight this rape culture, now more than ever. Ladies, men, children, let’s do this. Buy our organic cotton and upcycled stuff and we will work to #changetheculture. I love you ladies!
The main shirts that Mushpa + Mensa hand-print their original designs on is Alternative Apparel’s 100% organic collection, made from pesticide-free organic cotton.
Is Alternative’s cotton certified organic?
A: Yes. Anything in our line stating it is 100% Organic Cotton is certified organic cotton, produced pesticide-free. We keep copies of the organic certificates on file.
The dyes used to color Alternative Apparel’s pesticide-free organic cotton tees are low-impact dyes. Let’s breakdown this process called low-impact dying. A low-impact dye is a dye that has been classified by the Oeko-Tex Standard 100 as eco-friendly. Generally, low impact dyes do not contain toxic chemicals, heavy metals (like chrome, copper and zinc), or mordants (a substance, typically an inorganic oxide, that combines with a dye or stain and thereby fixes it in a material).
Low-impact dyes are dyes with a higher than average absorption rate (70%-80%, depending on the color). This means less water is required in the rinse process and less dye runs off in the water; therefore, the dyes have a lower impact on the environment. Alternative Apparel also use a G2 Eco-Wash to finish garments which uses 60% less water and no chemicals.
Alternative Earth’s collection water washes with reclaimed water, the organic cotton is certified, biodegradable fabric softeners and natural enzymes for their super-soft finishes to make the best basics.
Alternative Apparel make their clothing from sustainable fabrics (currently 65% of the fabrics they use are eco-friendly, although they are working to increase this figure), with a transparent supply chain in officially audited factories.
Manufacturing: They have all the right policies against forced labor, child labor, abuse, and insufficient wages — and they work nearly as hard on keeping their clothing non-toxic. Their factories are frequently inspected to make sure their dying processes are toxin-free, and their wool is sourced from sustainable alpaca farms in Peru.
The first elements we consider when selecting a vendor is their ability to meet our social compliance standards and the quality of their products … Typically, there are only certain geographic areas of the world that can meet our production needs. We head to those areas and search for vendors that exceed our expectations and requirements. If a factory does not meet our social compliance standards from the very beginning, we don’t even consider them. After that, we base or search on the quality of the goods and the efficiency with which they can be produced.
Environment: Thirty percent of their sales are from the Alternative Earth line Mushpa + Mensa uses, which is made from organic cotton, low-impact dyes, energy-efficient facilities, and absolutely no toxic substances. A portion of their sales benefits a variety of environmental organizations and charities.
Philanthropy: Alternative donates to multitudes of different charities under their “Common Thread” program. For instance, like with STATE: Going Beyond the Bag. STATE Bags one-for-one model provides at-risk kids with a fully-stocked backpack every time someone purchases a bag. That means when you get an awesome bag, you support #GiveBackPack at the same time.
We would love to share with you this fantabulous Mushpa y Mensa Earth Day extravaganza!!! It is happening this very weekend!!! What? Yes!
La Mushpa y La Mensa will be selling wares in the flesh at The Market NYC (159 Bleecker Street) all weekend long (Friday – April 19th 12pm-9pm, Sat – April 20th 11am-9pm, and Sun – April 21st 12pm-8pm).
Please, if you live in the city or are visiting, make sure to stop by and show us some love. We are unveiling our much awaited 100% organic cotton shirt designs (“Put a Bird on It” designed by Mushpa and “Mama Earth” by Mensa). These shirts are printed using water-based eco-friendly inks (301 ECO-Series by Matsui), free of PVC, phthalate, heavy metals, azo compounds, nonylphenol and formaldehyde. We clean up after ourselves using mostly water. When necessary, we may use a citrus and soy based eco-cleaner from Chemical Consultants Incorporated. We also do everything by hand from the design, to printing transparencies, exposing the screens and lastly, printing them on the shirts.