The Salvation Army, the Goodwill Store, and thrift shops: these are now the coolest places to buy new clothes. Or rather, new-old clothes.
The resurgence of vintage and retro styles among today’s youth, perpetuated by the hipster lifestyle that is nowhere more evident than off the Bedford Avenue stop in Brooklyn, has breathed new life into many urban thrift stores – and not just in the US. In an attempt to raise donations for the needy, elderly population in Israel, McCann Digital Israel capitalized on this concept in a big way.
Israel is home to thousands of Holocaust survivors and other elderly people who are finding it difficult to support themselves. Many of them have little to no money and food, with limited means of obtaining any. Unfortunately, most young people simply don’t care about the plight of the elderly. So how do you engage an apathetic youth population?
Provide them with something they can relate to.
Ami Alush, a creative director at McCann, breaks down this goal into a simple objective:
Instead of showing yet again elderly Israelis rummaging through garbage cans looking for food, which unfortunately nobody notices anymore, we thought about coming from a more positive direction in order to raise funds.
While the growing elderly population in Israel may not have a lot money or much in common with the younger generation, they do have something today’s youth want: original, vintage clothing.
McCann worked with the Shorashim Group, an organization that helps provide food for elderly people in need, to take advantage of this resource by creating their own vintage clothing brand. The organization asked the elderly they provide services to donate any unwanted clothing they may have. The clothes were then cleaned up, repaired, and incorporated into a photo shoot with many well-known Israeli models.
The clothes, which were tagged and rebranded as ‘Roots: Second Hand Fashion’, were made available through a special online store and select local thrift shops. Billboards, print ads, online banners and other digital ads promoted the ‘new’ Roots line, in addition to incredible press coverage from local media, fashion bloggers, and news outlets. The results of the campaign were staggering: In less than a week, the entire 2013 online collection had sold out.
With all the proceeds from the Roots initiative being donated back to the Shorashim Group, they were able to provide 1,400 holiday meals to local elderly people in need. The campaign was simple, and unbelievably effective, in reaching Israeli youth and engaging them to donate, showing a great example of making charitable giving relevant to the target audience. Plus, the Roots campaign successfully provides a donation platform for years to come, as additional seasonal lines can be released. Surely, Macklemore would be proud.
Check out a video of the campaign below:
This video illustrates 10 of them: thank you to Ozgur (Turkey), Hemanth (India), Christopher (France), Cristian (Cameroon), Josh (United States), Andjelic (Serbia), Marinescu (Romania), Noam (Israel), Swapnil (India), Goeffrey (Canada).
IF WE can ask the right questions, we can change the world.
There are not many store managers who would just shrug their shoulders upon hearing that one of the employees would be late for a shift. But Moran Goldfine – manager of The Women’s Courtyard at the Port – knew exactly with whom she would be working when she accepted the challenge to manage this social-venture boutique a few months back.
The store was opened in 2012 by the Women’s Courtyard, a multicultural organization that provides support and assistance for young-adult women in distress and at-risk who reside in the cities of Tel Aviv-Jaffa and Bat Yam.
Organization heads decided that an upscale clothing store selling top designer wear was a great way to offer these women a chance to enter the workforce on the right footing.
It is fashion and compassion combined: Brands like Banker, Top Shop, Billabong and local designers donate previous seasons’ wear to the store and proceeds go to at-risk youth.
“It’s a different experience to shop here,” Goldfine tells ISRAEL21c. “It’s a relaxed experience. We don’t pressure customers. You buy and donate.”
A visitor to the store would find it difficult to imagine that the shop staff hails from the extreme margins of Israeli society. Thanks to Goldfine, who has more than 10 years of experience in store management, the first cohort of eight trainees has learned how to do everything from greeting customers to operating the cash register.
This is the first job they’ve ever held and while it is their lifeline out of poverty, distress, discrimination and abuse, these young women are not “regular” employees. They come late for work or not at all, or may leave in the middle of a shift to run an errand.
But Goldfine encourages them to do their best.
“It’s a confidence boost for them,” says Goldfine. “It gives them hope to wake up in the morning and know that they have a place to go. The salary also gives hope and puts them in another position. These young women are amazing and what they’re doing is really admirable.”
“It is empowering beyond belief. Some of the young women can already hold a shift by themselves. It is beyond what we expected,” says Noa Turgeman, co-executive director of the Women’s Courtyard.
ICRF and Pink Lady support innovative breast cancer research projects at the Jewish General Hospital and in Israel, as well as the purchase of state-of-the-art equipment.
Event co-chairs this year were Julie Wiener, Maureen Tajfel, Sheryl Rosen Adler and Susan Lavy.
This year’s keynote speaker was Barbara Amiel; her husband, Conrad Black, was on hand as well. Past keynote speakers have included Margaret Trudeau, Marianne Pearl, widow of murdered journalist Daniel Pearl, and journalist Jeanette Walls, author of the 2005 memoir The Glass Castle.
This year’s honourees were Kathy Assayag, who has worked in advancement and fundraising for more than 20 years; Julie Greenbaum, co-founder and president of a movement to unite the younger generation against cancer, F*CK CANCER inwykiwyk (It’s Not What You Know, It’s Who You Know); Greenbaum lost her mother to ovarian cancer in 2010; and MNA Kathleen Weil.
Sheila Woodhouse, director of Nazareth House, wrote to The Gazette about a long-standing Christmas tradition at the Shaughnessy village shelter for men. For the past 25 years, a group of women she calls the “Angels of Hudson” have left their own families on Christmas morning – this year it was Dec. 24 – to drive into Montreal with a turkey dinner plus trimmings for 30.
“The Angels also arrive with thoughtful gifts for each and every resident of Nazareth House,” Woodhouse wrote.
“Many of our residents struggle with mental illness and homelessness. Most do not have any contact with their families. These beautiful Angels arrive, laden with … food, gifts, exuberance and the true spirit of Christmas. Each Christmas, they transform the House and the lives of each resident.”
Against enormous odds, Danielle Lepage has spearheaded an annual benefit to raise funds and awareness of sensory neuropathy, Type HSN2, a devastating genetic disease, Anita Kar of the Montreal Neurological Institute wrote to Applause.
“An amazing accomplishment from a woman who suffers from a crippling disease and has had several additional health complications in the year,” she wrote.
The disease, she explained, causes a dangerous lack of sensation, primarily in the hands and feet, and extremely fragile bones. “The combination of a lack of sensation and fragility leads to trauma and infections that often necessitate amputations,” she wrote. “This is how Danielle, in her 50s, has lost several of her fingers and toes.”
“We have to demystify this disease because people are afraid of us; they think it is contagious, but that is not the case,” Lepage said.
Lepage has organized four benefits to raise awareness of the disease: the first, held in 2009, raised just over $6,500. The fourth, held Nov. 17, 2012, raised $30,231.56.
The money will support research led by Bernard Brais at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital; he has dedicated his career to understanding and developing therapeutics for hereditary genetic diseases, including sensory neuropathies, that are more common in Quebec than elsewhere.
by Dudi Caspi
The PETA viral video comes days after Raff issued an open letter to the British Ministry of Defense, protesting the use of live pigs in battlefield doctors training in the UK. He advised them to follow in the Israel Defense Forces’ footsteps, who had already concluded that it was far better to work with injury simulators than live helpless animals.
In the video, 39 year old Raff recounts his Israeli army service as a paratrooper and affirms his belief that it is wrong to use animals for military training purposes. He goes on to acknowledge incorporating pro animal rights derived story-lines into his artistic work, albeit he admits he cannot take credit for Claire Danes’ character Carrie Matheson stating she does not eat meat on an episode of “Homeland”.
The Emmy award winning “Homeland” finished its second season amidst significant backlash from television critics, who felt the narrative lost its way half way through with preposterous plot developments that accelerated the show’s core story and made it implausible. However, “Homeland” and its three big names – Danes, Damian Lewis and Mandy Patinkin – were all nominated last week respectively for the upcoming 70th annual Golden Globes. Danes and the show itself both won awards last year.
Raff is finishing 2012 splendidly. Last week he and fellow “Homeland” executive producer Howard Gordon sold a new TV drama pilot to the FX network, called “Tyrant.” The plot revolves around an unassuming American family drawn into the workings of a turbulent Middle Eastern nation. If “Tyrant” is indeed ordered to series, former “Six Feet Under” and “Lost” writer Craig Wright would be show-runner. Shooting of the pilot is tentatively scheduled for spring.
Raff’s PETA video can be viewed below.
Yuval Adler’s parents took him on a family trip to the Israeli Sea Turtle Rescue Center in Michmoret, where the 10-year-old learned that many sea turtles die because they swallow helium balloons, which usually fall into the sea. Yuval immediately decided to take action and launch a campaign against the use of the colorful balloons.
Yuval, a fifth grader at the Yigal Alon Elementary School in Hod Hasharon, enthusiastically explains that “people release a large amount of balloons into the air on birthdays and rallies. I told my classmates that a significant amount of these balloons return to the earth and cause irreversible damage to the animals. The saltwater makes the balloons transparent, so animals such as sea turtles and whales think they are jellyfish. They eat them and die.”
After researching the issue further, Yuval prepared a presentation titled “Where balloons fly to” and recruited his classmates and teachers to a campaign aimed at stopping the use of balloons at rallies and raising awareness to the dangers facing marine life.
Yuval’s homeroom teacher Tami Shaham, says proudly: “It was all Yuval’s initiative. He studied the issue, recruited his friends, and the classes in school have begun to prepare an updated project to save sea turtles who get tangled up in balloons.”
Principal Levana Nuederfer added: “One kid’s passion inspired the entire school. The students prepared a project, made banners and built stands where they hand out informative material on the subject. Their work has yielded results.”
Yuval was not satisfied with raining awareness, so he sent an emotional letter to Hod Hasharon Mayor Hai Adiv, asking that during this year’s rally to mark the anniversary of Ron Arad’s captivity organizers will refrain from releasing 400 blue balloons into the air. The mayor was touched by the request, and just one balloon was released at the rally.
Yuval’s mother Hila said her son has “set a goal to reduce the devastating effect helium balloons have on nature, and he is not stopping at the mayor’s office. Yuval plans to turn to Knesset members and suggest they enact a law forbidding the release of these balloons in Israel.”
Yuval and his friends are very pleased with the results of their campaign. “During the rally for Ron Arad on Saturday only one balloon was released,” he said with a smile. “This means that my friends and I have succeeded in our struggle and raised awareness to the sea turtle issue.”