Thanks to you, this Black Friday weekend we donated 458 belts to community members in need.
There’s nothing we love more than a community, collaboration and clothing (yes, belts too). And man, today do we have a perfect combo of all three. We're joining forces with The Bissell Centre, an organization that works with communities to move people out of poverty, for the upcoming Black Friday weekend. To share a little bit more about how we’re working together, we spoke with the passionate manager of Marketing and Communications at Bissell, Devin Komarniski, about the power of partnerships and how we can make a difference in our small, stretchy way.
He begins by telling us all about the Centre: "The Bissell Community Space is a very important resource that allows members a respite from the elements with access to bathrooms, laundry, workshops, programming and includes the Community Closet." The closet is filled floor to ceiling with clothing racks and is entirely made possible by donations. It provides community members with the experience of ‘shopping’ for clothing (everything is free), and the inventory is changed seasonally depending on needs and always carries the basics.
As a wardrobe staple that many of us wear every day, it should come as no surprise that in the closet, jeans are the biggest request. Devin says it’s an article of clothing that has lots of utility for both men and women. However, sizing can be an issue. All sizes come to the closet, but it’s all dependent on what is donated. This can make finding the perfect fit a challenge.
This is where we come in.
“When people donate to the closet, there are lots of useful items that come in, jackets, sweaters and pants, but accessories, like belts, are commonly asked for but rarely donated. A belt that accommodates all sizes really works to help get clothing that fits perfectly.”
This year, Unbelts is having a BOGO sale... buy one, give one. Every belt sold from Nov 29 - Dec 2 will be matched with a belt donated to the Bissell Centre Community Closet.
Devin says that, beyond the utility of a belt, there’s also something extra special about getting to give community members a brand new item. “We love it when new products are donated and look forward to sharing something new with the community members to lift their spirits and provide that sense of dignity.”
We are excited to partner with the Bissell for the Black Friday weekend as a means to use all the marketing buzz surrounding the weekend as a force for good.
“Partnerships with locally-owned businesses and charities can really lift up both. We can share resources and create a platform that is super powerful. Unbelts is known for caring for the community and the environment, and shares a strong value alignment with the work that the Bissell Centre does.” (Aw, shucks) “[Working together] gives us new reach and raises awareness that people have needs that are easy to accommodate.” Devin emphasizes the impact of something as seemingly simple as a belt: “If we can meet a basic need of a belt [from donations], it allows us to reallocate our resources into other areas.”
Beyond the Community Closet, the Bissell Centre is loaded with initiatives to positively impact people’s lives. Devin “hope[s] this partnership can drive attention to the variety of needs in the community.” We really hope so too. This weekend, we also encourage you to take a peek at the Bissell’s brilliant holiday gift guide. It’s an incredibly easy-to-use resource that allows you to “shop” all the ways you can help support them this holiday season.
Whether you buy a belt, donate to the Bissell gift guide, or do something else for those in your community, we hope you find the special joy in giving. We think Devin summed it up best in saying that it’s about recognizing “that people, no matter who they are, deserve respect and celebrating the uniqueness in them. To acknowledge people in need who make up the fabric of our communities. Lifting people up is what we do.”
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