It all began when... - RESIST CLOTHING COMPANY

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It all began when...

 

The story:

 

Indigenous people have been systemically oppressed and under-represented for centuries. In 2020, despite the worldwide pandemic, Indigenous people continue to be mistreated, and our voices continuously ignored.

Mitch (the owner) would occasionally attend peaceful rallies and awareness gatherings that brought important Indigenous issues into the spotlight. One day Mitch decided to create his own shirt, equipped with a powerful message that read "F*** Colonialism". Several people approached him and asked where he got the shirt. After telling them he made it at home, most of them said he should make more and sell it, because they would buy one. This sparked the entrepreneurial spirit in Mitch, so he did some googling.

After noticing a lack of Indigenous representation in the casual wear category, Mitch decided to fill the niche and create a clothing brand that imagines streetwear through an Indigenous lens; spreading bold messages that need to be heard. such as "Honor the treaties, Fuck Colonialism, People Before Profit, etc"

The brand name started as Our Feather Clothing Company (2020), and was eventually changed to Resist Clothing Company in Sept 2021. 

Today we continue to innovate and find new ways to amplify our Indigenous presence, share our creative designs with the world, and collaborate with other Indigenous artists/brands and we aspire to collaborate with some of the largest clothing brands worldwide.

 

The visionary:

 

Mitch Gegwetch (The company owner) is an Urban Indigenous Entrepreneur and non-profit leader. Ojibwe/Anishinaabe and a registered member of Sagamok First Nation. A community located in Northern Ontario Canada.

Mitch grew up in Toronto Ontario, with strong family roots in his community of Sagamok, returning each year to spend time with family, friends and attend local events such as the annual Sagamok powwow.

All native people are born unique; we come in different shapes, sizes and skin tones. Mitch understands the privilege that comes with being a fair/light skinned native (or as some call "white passing") with a mixed lineage. Mitch's grandparents are survivors of the resident school era, if not for their resilience, Mitch would not be here today. Through this realization, Mitch vowed to use this privilege to aid his community and add an Indigenous perspective where it may not have been introduced before. After schooling and a budding tech career, In Late 2016, Mitch lead an Initiative to bring his knowledge of technology and entrepreneurship opportunities to his home community. The pilot programs were successful and this enabled him to travel across Canada working in several communities, delivering entrepreneurship, coding and robotics programs to Indigenous youth. 

Mitch continued this work for a few years until the pandemic hit in 2020, this put a hold on his ability to travel and work directly in communities. Being that it was a non-profit initiative, plans fell through, out of pocket funds eventually dried up and the project was put on hold and eventually dissolved. But not without making an impact on the lives of over 500 Indigenous youth across Canada! and inspiring other non-profit initiatives to continue this important work; to close the gap on the digital divide.

Today, Mitch owns and operates Resist Clothing Company, while continuing his philanthropy in the community wherever he can. Lending his time, finances and expertise to projects and initiatives that uplift Indigenous young people.  

 

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