These Luxury Brands Are Offering Support To The Australian Bushfire Efforts—And How You Can Help
The Australian bushfires that began in September last year have been one of the worst disasters the country has faced, with New South Wales and Victoria being the most affected states. The raging fires have caused the deaths of at least 29 people, destroyed over 5,900 buildings, and killed more than as estimated one billion animals. While severe thunderstorms have offered some much-needed rainfall to the drought-hit regions, about 82 fires continue to burn.
To help offer support to the Australia bushfire relief efforts, many brands have come forward to either donate to the efforts or raise funds from their proceeds.
In its effort to raise funds for the conservation of the Australian wildlife affected by the fires, Balenciaga has released a Koala-themed capsule collection featuring the adorable Australian marsupial on a T-shirt and hoodie. The brand has pledged to donate 100 per cent of its proceeds to “the most appropriate local conservation organization selected by the Kering Group and Balenciaga sustainability experts”. It is sold exclusively on balenciaga.com and will ship in March.
Balenciaga’s parent company, Kering has also announced that its group of luxury brands “Gucci, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, Brioni, Boucheron, Pomellato, Dodo, Qeelin, Ulysse Nardin and Girard-Perregaux will together donate a total of one million Australian dollars as an immediate contribution.” It will also be donated to the local organisation deemed most appropriate by the group’s sustainability experts.
The fashion brand’s charity arm, the Coach Foundation will be making a US$100,000 gift to the Australian Red Cross for its bushfire relief efforts. Coach’s parent company, Tapestry also has a matching gift program for its North American employees, matching any employee contributions made to the Australian Red Cross or qualified relief organisation through the Coach and Kate Spade New York foundations.
4/8 Alex Perry
Known for its show-stopping evening dresses and wedding gowns, Australian label Alex Perry announced via Instagram on Jan 4 that it would donate 100 per cent of all sales both online and in stores for seven days in support of the New South Wales Rural Fire Service.
5/8 PVH Corp.
American clothing company PVH Corp., which owns Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger, has made a donation of AUD100,000 to the Australian Red Cross’s Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund.
Like Alex Perry, Australian luxury label Zimmermann announced on Jan 4 that 20 per cent of all sales on Jan 5 both online and in stores globally to the Red Cross to support its bushfire relief efforts.
7/8 Capri Holdings Limited
Luxury fashion conglomerate Capri Holdings Limited, which owns Versace, Jimmy Choo and Michael Kors has also joined in with its support by pledging a donation of AUD$100,000 to the Australian Red Cross.
See also: Lupita Nyong'o Joins Michael Kors To Watch Hunger Stop
Cult athletic wear label Lululemon is supporting the Relief Run, a 21.1km half marathon or 5km virtual race that will take place between Jan 17 to 19. Participants can enter online for a fee of $50 and join from anywhere in the world, with 100 per cent of the proceeds going to the Australian Red Cross’s Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund. Additionally, Lululemon has made a donation of AUD50,000 to the fund.
How To Help
If you would like to lend a hand to the crisis, here are some verified funds and organisations you can donate to:
Australian Red Cross
The Red Cross’s Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund goes towards providing emergency assistance and recovery programs in communities affected by disasters, including bushfires. It is also used for helping communities prepare for disasters and the training, equipment, and logistics of volunteers.
The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army provides “immediate relief and support to firefighters, emergency workers, evacuees and communities by providing meals, bedding, care packs and cash grants.” Its Emergency Services teams are currently active across the country to offer assistance.
St. Vincent de Paul Society Australia
The St Vincent de Paul Society in Australia is a charity focused on combating social injustice. Their bushfire appeal hopes to assist evacuated families in covering their bills and expenses to rebuild their homes.
NSW Rural Fire Service
At the forefront of fighting the bushfires, the NSW Rural Fire Service is the world's largest volunteer fire service. Donations made to the service are for the benefit of volunteer brigades. The service has also set up specific funds to support the families of firefighters who have lost their lives while on duty during the fire season.
The NSW Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Service Inc (WIRES) is a nonprofit wildlife rescue organisation. Its volunteers attended over 3,300 rescues in December alone, and the nonprofit is appealing for donations to support their rescues. The fund is also used to operate its Wildlife Rescue Office, subsidise food costs for wildlife in care as well as train and support volunteers.
Australia's leading animal protection organisation is appealing for funds to support volunteer wildlife carers to travel to fire-devastated areas and provide them with the resources needed. The fund will also go towards the longer-term needs of affected wildlife.
This story originally appeared in Singapore Tatler.