On|Off September 2007: Darfur Crisis Project

On|Off is donating space at this September’s London Fashion Week to highlight the plight of refugees in the troubled region of Darfur and to raise money for the medical aid agency Merlin.

In Darfur over 2 million people are living in temporary camps after fleeing four years of fighting in the region. Whole villages have been attacked, families murdered and survivors have been left without food, shelter or health care.

On|Off is doing their bit to make a difference. Designers have created unique and thought provoking pieces to display during the event. All the designs will be sold at an online auction, with all proceeds supporting Merlin’s mobile medical teams in Darfur.

Darfur Crisis Project



To purchase a unique one off item of On|Off designer clothing and contribute to the crisis in Darfur please visit fashionspace.com

Download PDF: On|Off - Highlights the Darfur crisis

The designer participating are: 

Allegra Hicks
Alex Noble
Aminaka Wilmont
Hannah Martin
Jacob Kimmie

Kalikas Armour
Louise Armstrup

Richard Sorger
Sinta Tantra
Steph Aman



'I wanted to represent in my designs the terrible conflict with the army green canvas bag with my Allegra Hicks silver water-drop logo turned blood red to represent something as pure as water being destroyed by the deaths of so many innocents. I also wanted to paint a picture of hope for the future on the kaftan by embroidering white doves coming out of the darkness.'



‘With all the chaos that surrounds our everyday lives it is easy to forget that there is a world outside our front door that is need of help. There is no place more in urgent need that Darfur. The situation calls for immediate action and it is a cry that should stir all of us into rediscovering what is outside the front door and reconnect with our humanity’.



‘I took part in this project because it is important to help in whatever way we can to raise awareness of the terrible situation there, which seems to be being pushed under the carpet with no Western Champions fighting this cause’.



‘Mac-Millan are participating with the On|Off Installation for Darfur to help raise awareness to the atrocities that threaten the lives of people throughout this region’.



‘I’ve decided to take part in On|Off’s Darfur initiative because I am appalled by the lack of exposure in the media concerning this catastrophic humanitarian crisis. My design explores issues of homelessness and exile.  Despite the many problems that affect people in Darfur - disease, violence, hunger to name but a few - being without a home is a wound that leaves indelible marks not only for families living through the conflict but for generations to come’. 



Before this project I didn't know much about the Darfur Crisis. The more I read and researched into it, the more I realised that there was a real need to highlight this incredibly serious humanitarian problem. Although individually it seems difficult to make a change I believe that even making a small participation in some way will help - whether its donating a piece of work and raising money or just creating an awareness through being part of On |Off I have faith that even small differences can create waves. 



This piece of work represents the plight in Darfur
A frail skeletal child sized garment eaten away by mosquito flies carrying the spread of disease.
The baneful trap of a chorded string hood tie wraps itself around the body.
No one is there to help.
The west turns a blind eye….
After all what benefits could our government possibly gain - there is no oil or money to be made here.
….simply suffering souls….



This piece is designed as a desperate plea to all of those involved in prolonging the horrific suffering of the people of Darfur who are being brutally murdered, raped, tortured and starved to death.
These gilded shackles are for the oil conglomerates who are pouring over one million dollars a day into the coffers of the Sudanese government, for the companies in the UK, the US and all over the world who hold shares in these conglomerates, for us all in the Western world who drive the demand to maintain our lavish lifestyles.
We all have a responsibility to free Darfur from the shackles that bind it and stop this despicable war.



I’m not a political person and I’m wary of fashion designers making overt political statements.
I wanted to create a seductive piece that will get the wearer complimented. And the compliment might lead to a question about the garment’s imagery. This allows for the subject of Darfur to be raised and discussed. It is only through raising awareness –one person at a time- that the possibility of help or resolution becomes more hopeful.
The imagery is like a tourist’s map -‘you are here’- though fortunately, you’re not.



“I was born in South Africa and I know all too well how cheap life is in Africa. I decided to take part to conceal my guilt of being in a privileged situation in the UK.  My t-shirt represents Africa’s Bleeding Heart and the world’s greatest heartache.”