Sunday, 23 June 2024
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Sunday, 23 June 2024

Hft promotes sustainability with ‘first of many’ clothes swap

AMONG the many staggering fast-fashion facts is that 100 billion items of clothing are produced each year. In recognition of this, and in an effort to raise awareness of the fact, staff at national learning disability charity Hft hosted their very first clothes swap.

The event, which took place last week at the charity’s head office in Bristol, saw around 25 staff members attend in an effort to promote sustainability efforts. With a goal of raising awareness for the environmental and social impacts of fast-fashion, staff were encouraged to donate five items of clothing from their wardrobes and take home five different items of clothing from the other donations.

Staff members were also encouraged to donate £5 towards the event which will go towards Hft’s services for adults with a learning disability and autism in their west region. The funds raised will contribute to ongoing projects that are currently seeking extra funding such as sensory rooms and garden equipment.

The idea first came about following a discussion with Hft’s Sustainability Taskforce – a colleague-run sustainability group. Both Megan Evans, Sustainability Lead at Hft, and Lauren Fields, Hft’s Community Fundraising Officer, were keen to take the idea forward and host a cross-functional sustainability and fundraising event.

Hft promotes sustainability with ‘first of many’ clothes swap

Megan explains:

“Having discussed the concept more with colleagues, it became clear that the environmental and social impacts of fast-fashion is an issue people feel strongly about, and so it was agreed that we would host our first clothes swap event and fundraise for Hft at the same time.

“It was important to use the opportunity to spread awareness and raise money that will go towards funding Hft projects and initiatives. We think we have also demonstrated how fun clothes swapping can be; it was great to get together with like-minded individuals and browse through each other’s clothes. There was music and cake and it all added to a great atmosphere!”

Last week’s clothes swap is just one example of opportunities Hft is hoping to provide to act on the issues of waste and recycling. Both of these issues were highlighted as priorities to both the people supported by the charity and the staff during the development of a sustainability strategy.

The pair are hoping this is the first of many swap events and are hoping to, in the future, extend invites to the people supported by Hft and encourage their services across England and Wales to host their own events.

Megan concluded:

“The impacts of fast fashion affect everybody. It’s important that we can all champion sustainability, circularity and action against environmental issues.”

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