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Miami on a Mission: Meet Local Brand AWOM

AWOM, or Angel Watching Over Me, is a Miami-based lifestyle brand that was founded in 2014. A nonprofit company who shares the solid belief that it takes a village.

A female-founded company, AWOM’s clothing is represented by a strong feminine voice. Decked in the words, ‘woman,’ ‘femme,’ or ‘mujer,’ on many of the pieces, this sense of female empowerment is rooted in the soul of their culture.

Honestly, that’s enough for me to buy every sweatshirt in every single color — seriously, the colors are on point.

But the brand represents more than that.

Inspired by the trending hashtag #angelwatchingoverme, AWOM, was founded by Sarah Akiba, a local Miami stylist and fashion designer. After losing her father to lung cancer in 2013, Ms. Akiba, felt it her mission, to connect with others who had gone through a similar loss, to recognize our own angels.

With her background in fashion and her drive to spread love and support to others, Sarah designed her first series of hats in November 2015, during lung cancer awareness month. All of the proceeds were donated to The American Lung Association and Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation, in efforts to help raise awareness and in finding a cure.

She ended up raising over $2000.

After this success, Ms. Akiba was ready to create a foundation of her own; Which is when AWOM was born.

Her mission was simple: Raise money to donate to different associations, families in need, and support groups. She began hosting weekly support groups called Time Talks for those who have lost someone close to them.

She started holding Halloween parties at Miami Children’s Hospital and Joe Dimaggio Children’s Hospital, and working with the Miami Rescue Mission, where she donated over 300 toys during the holidays. She began her own publication and podcast to spread helpful information and connect with others.

Though it was a hat with the simple word ‘mujer’ embroidered on the front, that first drew my attention to the brand, it is their mission that keeps me going back for more.

That of community, of love, of support and of strength. Of those we have lost and those who are still around — our angels here on earth.

I’m not crying, you’re crying.

I find it ironic that I write this on the anniversary of my step-dad passing away from multiple myeloma; blood cell cancer.

And I am so grateful. What at first felt like a coincidence, now feels more like a sign.

A reminder that my angel is still, and will always be, watching over me.

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Katy Prohira

Katy Prohira

Creative Writer based in Miami, FL.