A number of fashion labels which produce in Nepal, including Komodo, Yumi and Here Today Here Tomorrow (HTHT), have launched a fundraising campaign to help victims of the disastrous earthquake which struck the country on April 25. The 7.8 earthquake, which struck near the capital of Nepal, Kathmandu two weeks ago, has claimed 7,750 lives, leaving thousands more homeless, without food, water and medical aid.
Named 'Brand Aid for Nepal', the initiative was originally set up by ethical fashion brand Komodo and independent label Kusan, who have both made their products in the country for a number of years, with the aim of raising 100,000 pounds. Together the labels have invited other retailers and brands to join together and donate funds for those in need. Brands including Omodo, Braintree, Yoga Matters, YMC, Firebrand, Religion, Made Jewellery, Forever Amano, Continental Clothing and Pachacuti have joined the initiative.
Fashion labels come together to raise donations for Nepal
A donation fund has been set up online through registered charity The Bulldog in London, with 41,520 pounds being raised to date. "We've been in contact with our good friends from other brands who work in Nepal and we want to unite in our efforts together and hope by doing so we can build a bigger fund and more effectiveness on the ground," commented Anna-Maria Hesse, one of the founders of HTHT. "We want to be stronger together and to show the people there that we are thinking of them and ready to help them in their time of need."
In order to ensure the funds raised go to those in need and not to any corrupt political parties active in the country, the initiative will transfer the donations to Alison Marston, a 30 year old aid veteran, who was born in Kathmandu and has worked with the International Committee for the Red Cross. "We urge all of who with any kind of brand or retail store and those of you wear our clothes and want to stand up and support the Nepali people in their hour of need to please join us," added Mark Bloom, managing director of Komodo.
"Lets show what good brands can do together." Producing 80 percent of its collection in five factories Nepal, the ethical label has donated 3,000 pounds to the campaign. Fashion brands Joe Browns and Yumi, as well as accessories label Kusan have matched Komodo donation of 3,000 pounds. Yumi's founders Uttam and Clare Nepal, who have personal ties with the country have taken one step further and launched the 'Asha' dress to raise additional funds for the earthquake victims in Nepal. Retailing for 45 pounds, the label will donate 100 percent of the proceeds to the Yumi Nepal Earthquake Appeal.
"Most of my family are homeless, including my very poorly grandparents, as are many other families, and people in the villages most of whom now have absolutely nothing," explains Uttam. "Rural and less populated areas don't always get the attention they so desperately need, as they are the more difficult areas to access, and often the most badly affected. We’re focussing our efforts on providing relief through sales of our 'Asha' dress. Asha means hope in Nepalese, and that’s what we're trying to bring to these remote areas."
Sustainable fashion brand People Tree have also launched an online campaign with the Fair Trade Group Nepal to raise funds for aid relief. The label will donate 10 percent of sales from all knitwear and products made in Nepal to areas affected by the earthquake.