Interview with Sam Sisakhti on Believe in Yourself Charity


Sam Sisakhti is the founder and CEO of UsTrendy. He was named Boston Magazine's Most Promising Innovator, Mass High Tech's Next Generation of Entrepreneur, and Internet Retailer's Top 10 Most Effective Social Media Marketers. UsTrendy is ranked as a top 500 online retailer in the second edition of the Internet Retailer Top 500 along with one of the 5 fastest growing e-tailers. UsTrendy serves as an online fashion marketplace to over 20,000 sellers from 100 countries. Sam was the 2017 Retail TouchPoints Retail Innovator of Year Award Winner. Sam was also listed on the Power 30 under 30 list which is comprised of the 30 most influential people in sports, media, or business.

Sam Sisakhti is Mass Challenge Judge and recently founded a charity called Believe in Yourself (www.believeinyourself.org) which provides underprivileged girls with clothing for school dances and promotes positive body image through a mentoring program.

Sam has been featured in in the Boston Globe, Inc. Magazine, CBS morning News, ABC Channel 5, US News, Boston Herald, Women's Wear Daily, Forbes, Vogue UK, NY Metro, NPR, FOX News, PBS News Hour, CNN.


I had the privilege of interviewing Sam.


Faten Abdallah (FA): Why did you enter the world of fashion?
Sam Sisakhti (SS): I had a 9 to 5 job which I hated. After four days, I quit the job and went to Vegas where I met my friend who was a fashion designer. I started helping him with his business, and then I thought that I should start a business in which I enable fashion designers to sell their clothing through me. www.UsTrendy.com was launched in 2008 and its a global marketplace where fashion designers sell their clothing.

FA: What did you learn about yourself as an entrepreneur in the fashion
world?
SS: I learned that market is always right. A Lot of times we have merchandisers try to decide what the next trend is but consistently we notice that end of day the people always have the loudest voice.

FA; How can girls improve their confidence despite media and societal
expectations?
SS: Your confidence must come from within. You can not look at outside factors either positive or negative for self validation.


FA: Tell us about Believe in Yourself and its mission.
SS: While running UsTrendy, I observed things which led me to launch Believe in Yourself.  We have had customers post photos of themselves on social media as part of the UsTrendy interaction with our customers. I noticed cyber bullying going on and also body shaming in the comments sections. I found this to be really distasteful and concerning. This was one of the motivations for me to start Believe in Yourself.

At the same time,  I realized the enormous social pressure that many young girls feel to try to be hip and socially cool by wearing clothing that’s seen as stylish. Many girls are unable to afford these fashions and can often feel ashamed and isolated socially. This inspired me to launch Believe in Yourself.

The mission is to promote a positive body image and healthy self esteem among young women at an early age. We want to empower these young girls to feel good about themselves and to take on active social roles within their school communities.

The Believe in Yourself Project goes into community centers, after-school programs, and low-income housing centers to provide designer dresses for underprivileged girls to wear at upcoming school dances. At the same time, we are empowering girls by promoting positive body image through mentoring and speakers.

This Fall, we will roll out our national mentoring programs which will be a weekly mentorship meetings in various cities across country along with online seminars available to all girls through out the country. The mentorship programs and online seminars will be interactive and open table discussions where influential women will mentor and have discussions with the girls about positive body image and anti-cyber bullying.

Visit 
www.believeinyourself.org for more information.  

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