Shima Seiki
TechTextil North America

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Industry Talk

Hanes donates face masks and socks to support the homeless

Ahead of #GivingTuesday, America’s HanesBrands apparel, underwear and sock brand, is asking everyone to join in supporting those who are most vulnerable.

24th November 2020

Knitting Industry
 |  Winston-Salem, NC, USA

Knitted Outerwear

Imagine trying to protect yourself, your children, your family against COVID-19 while living without shelter or the basic necessities of life, says apparel maker HanesBrands. America’s growing homeless population is among the most vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic, and that is why Hanes is encouraging everyone to join together to support those living without shelter ahead of #GivingTuesday.

During 2020, America’s leading basic apparel, underwear and sock brand has supported nearly 400 organizations fighting homelessness in all 50 states, along with Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico.

The brand has donated more than 1 million masks, enabling those experiencing homelessness to access to public resources and facilities while helping to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus. It has also provided nearly 300,000 pairs of socks, which help keep feet clean, comfortable and healthy for people who walk an average of 10 miles per day, Hanes says. Since the program’s inception in 2009, Hanes has provided more than 3 million pairs of socks – one of the items relief agencies request most.

Additionally, Hanes has Partnered with Rainier Fruit Company for the third ‘Pears for Pairs’ campaign, currently running in United Supermarkets, Harris Teeter and Wegmans locations across the country, on a program that donates a portion of the proceeds from bulk and bagged pear sales to purchase socks. In 2019, the campaign resulted in 25,000 pairs of socks being distributed to four non-profits serving those living homeless.

The company has also continued its 11-year partnership with Invisible People and its founder and homeless advocate, Mark Horvath, to distribute socks and raise awareness about homelessness in the United States and around the world.

"The COVID-19 pandemic has changed life for us all, but this year has been exceptionally rough for people experiencing homelessness,” Horvath said. “The economic impact and lack of affordable housing continues to significantly increase homeless numbers, while homeless shelters have had to reduce capacity and are faced with more need yet fewer resources to help.”

“And the outlook is grim as dropping temperatures and the flu season are added to the mix.”

“Invisible People is proud to partner with Hanes to make a difference through product donations and by encouraging people to support their local homeless services,” he continued. “Now more than ever, our homeless population needs support – and there is something that everyone can do to help.”

The needs vary from community to community, Hanes explains. For example, The Road Home in Salt Lake City is requesting hats, gloves and snow boots, while Roof Above in Charlotte, North Carolina, is asking for towels and blankets. Merideth Spriggs, founder and chief kindness officer for CARIDAD in Las Vegas, notes the importance of community support: “Due to quarantine restrictions, the homeless are not able to get their basic needs met – they might not have a mask, they may not be able to get to water sources, or they might have a cup that they can’t refill because of the new restrictions,” Spriggs said. “Just be aware of that and if you see a homeless person, share the love. Giving them something as simple as a bottle of water can change, or, quite honestly, save somebody’s life.”

Sidney Falken, chief branding officer for HanesBrands, said: “We know that product donations are very meaningful to those experiencing homelessness, and we are honoured to help. It takes all of us to help support our communities, and we urge everyone to try to do their part to make a difference.”

Learn more about homelessness, how COVID-19 is impacting those living homeless, the organizations Hanes is partnering with and how everyone can make difference in the lives of those who need it most on Hanes For Good. The new site is dedicated to the brand’s social purpose activities.

HanesBrands Website

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