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I’ve seen a lot of women mistreated,” says Michelle Orr, Vice President of My Sister’s Closet, “and I’ve wanted to help them feel encouraged.”
Michelle initially came to My Sister’s Closet as a volunteer a little over 10 years ago. Shortly after, she became a sales associate, then boutique manager and, finally, Vice President.
My Sister’s Closet is a retail boutique that was the original funding source for the Truth for Women organization, which runs Truth Home in the Lehigh Valley — a therapeutic residence offering a safe place for survivors of sex trafficking and sexual exploitation.
Volunteers, like Michelle was, are the backbone of the organization. They keep the programs running while it receives funding from churches, fundraisers like an annual 5K, a silent auction, the fashion show at The Hotel Bethlehem, and of course, donations.
“An anonymous donor made a matching donation of $20,000 this year,” Michelle says. “We were able to raise over $30,000, so we received the full amount he donated.”
Michelle has always loved fashion and retail, but in the future she sees herself speaking to the community more. She wants to be able to provide updates about the encouraging stories of the work they’re doing, like the one that happened this past Christmas.
A horse and carriage company in Bethlehem donated free rides to all the women in Truth Home, complete with tiaras from the Dollar Tree. They proceeded down main street, waving to people they didn’t know and who didn’t know them.
“One of the women came back to the home that night,” Michelle says, “and said she’d never felt more beautiful in her life.”
“That’s why we keep doing what we’re doing,” she continues, “because their childhood was stolen from them. To be able to give them a little bit of a childhood experience is really priceless.”