Melissa Toro Advocates for a Dignified Life for Sex Workers and their Families

**Melissa Toro: From Fashion Designer to Advocate for Disadvantaged Women**

**Summary**
Fashion designer Melissa Toro is the founder of Putamente Poderosas, an organization that supports disadvantaged women in Medellin, so that their children can have a better future. Melissa’s own interest in sex workers began with a performance by “Las Guerreras del Centro” and now her organization helps sex workers and other women who are experiencing poverty, displacement, and single parenthood.

Melissa Toro remembers that her mother encouraged her to pursue a career in art. After studying design and exploring theatre, she became interested in the stories of sex workers who featured as characters in many of the plays she saw. This sparked a curiosity in her, and eventually led her to the performance of “Las Guerrerras del Centro”. This had a profound impact, and provided her with the inspiration to create Putamente Poderosas, her organization and mission in life. The organization seeks to alleviate social prejdices that have been impsoed on disadvantaged women and ensure their basic rights.

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