I have joined with four other local interior designers and many of my product vendors to design and decorate Catherine’s Cottage, which is a new short-term shelter in Baltimore for survivors of human trafficking. The Salvation Army of Central Maryland will provide them with trauma counseling, support groups, medical and dental services, and mentoring. The program helps to put these individuals on a path to a free and safe life. It has been wonderful to work with Andrea Orndorff of A.Lynn Design, Liz Dickson of Millbrook Circle Interior Design, Meghan Friedman of Redhead Design, and Denise Yearwood of Yearwood Interiors. These ladies are so giving of their time and talents.
As designers, we wanted to create a place where they feel welcome, and to make this home an environment for personal growth and rebuilding self-esteem. I personally want them to feel like they are receiving a warm hug as soon as they enter.
I am thrilled to be designing the receiving room, living room and dining room. I am using calming blues and hopeful whites, and accenting those with fresh greens, turquoise and yellows that invoke the feelings of new beginnings — like spring.
I have enlisted a fantastic artist, Lisa Brown Malveaux, to create something special in the receiving room along the back wall and over an arched doorway. We are considering something with a strong tree, birds and butterflies. I will post more on this soon!
We are also looking to create a backdrop where we can take a photo of each mother and child that has gone through the program. It’s a way to signify that they have found their wings to move on and succeed. Each survivor can carry a photo with them to remind them of how strong, beautiful and special they are.
Here’s an example, by Kelsey Montague. What Lifts You – Wings
Lisa is just one of the many vendors who have been gracious in donating to this project. Over the next few months, I will be featuring each vendor to thank them for their generosity. To contact Lisa or see her incredible work here is a link to her Facebook page Studio Malveaux.
January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month, which is the perfect time to introduce you to this project. Human trafficking is defined as the trade of humans, most commonly for the purpose of sexual slavery, forced labor or commercial sexual exploitation. In 2014, nearly 400 survivors in Maryland were provided assistance. The total number of people being held by force is unknown due to the secretive nature of this crime.
If you would like to make a donation to Catherine’s Cottage, send a check to The Salvation Army of Central Maryland, 814 Light Street, Baltimore, MD 21230 and mention Catherine’s Cottage on the memo line. We also have a donation wish list for personal items, clothing and toiletries here: Catherine’s Cottage Wish List
This project means so much to so many. Thanks so much for your support.