There is power in numbers. There is power in kindness. There is power in equality.
Change is not about leaving your mark it is about making a difference. It does take a village. In order to create change, strength is in numbers, passion and tenacity.
Leigh Ann Barnes was sparked by a challenge from my family: create a transparent stadium-approved bag that is stylish, functionable and fun. What came to be: a dynamic accessory collection providing jobs for women in-need [and the best stadium bag, ever!].
Emboldened by the challenge, I harnessed my ingenuity and created a chic convertible game day product. During the creative process I realized a sense of purpose was needed that went beyond the Gamechanger Bag.
The Aha Moment: connect ideas with action, need with purpose and, ultimately unite women of all ages. From the catalyst of the Gamechanger came smaller leather goods which could be made domestically by survivors of abuse. Creativity, kindness and compassion through hands-on manufacturing.
Leigh Ann Barnes is defined by transparency, creating joy and making change happen. Our long-term goal is to introduce other brands to the Cottage Manufacturing Model in Los Angeles and Georgia. We are all equals and deserve equal opportunities, together we can be gamechangers.
The end [but really, it’s just the beginning].....
"I love being a part of the VIP Team. It has truly helped my family. I have two children, ages two and five. Supporting them is my top priority. Working for VIP Survivor has given me the income I needed to save during this time at the shelter. What started as a job to earn extra money soon turned into so much more. I learned that my organizational skills, attention to detail, and conscientiousness are strengths that companies look for when hiring. I thought everyone was like me...it's nice to know what makes me special!"
– VIP SURVIVOR
STATEMENT OF STYLE WITH PURPOSE
“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, and some style.” - Maya Angelou
Leigh Ann Barnes is the culmination of consciousness, compassion and collaboration. Challenged by her family to create a stylish stadium-approved bag Barnes realized in the process, we could provide jobs for women in-need.
At the brand’s core is transparency: convertible stadium bags that transform from chic to see-through in a snap.
After witnessing fabric excess from the Gamechanger bags Barnes added another tier to her business model. Barnes reclaims fabric scraps and repurposes them into smaller leather goods handmade by survivors of domestic abuse.
Leigh Ann Barnes is more than a bag or accessory; it’s about recognizing and embracing we are all equally important and deserve the same opportunities. Though Leigh Ann Barnes is only one step in the journey to these women restarting their lives, it connects ideas with action, need with purpose and ultimately unites women of all ages.
From this game changing foundation, Leigh Ann Barnes partners exclusively with accredited factories when manufacturing overseas to ensure women working abroad have a safe work environment.
In the U.S. company aspirations include growing the Survivors Cottage Manufacturing Program in Los Angeles and Athens, Georgia. The goal is to incorporate brands and manufacturers into the Program as a resource for reclaiming and repurposing their own excess materials. A duality of doing good as they support work for women in need of reclaiming and repurposing their lives.