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Aéropostale Raises Awareness of Youth Homelessness with Denim Drive

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Actress Jenna Ortega is throwing her support behind Aéropostale’s “Teens for Jeans” campaign.

The specialty teen retailer and DoSomething.org, an organization for young people and social change, have teamed up for the ninth time for “Teens for Jeans,” an initiative that since 2008 has activated young people to donate more than five million pairs of jeans to local homeless shelters.

The campaign encourages young people to hold jean drives at their schools and in their communities. Jeans are one of the most commonly requested items in homeless shelters, Aéropostale reported. And in the U.S., where nearly 40 percent of people experiencing homelessness is under the age of 18, jeans can provide a sense of comfort.

“Youth homelessness is an important issue and we hope this campaign, as well as the continued work of DoSomething.org, helps to raise awareness and inspire further action in local communities,” Natasha Fishman, EVP of marketing at Aéropostale-owner Authentic Brands Group, said. “We’re proud to continue our partnership with DoSomething.org to bring jeans to teens in need across the U.S.”

This year, Ortega, who is known for her roles in shows “You” and “Jane the Virgin,” is helping to amplify the cause with a PSA video filmed during a shelter visit in her hometown of Indio, Calif. In the video, she speaks to the shelter’s director and two young people about their homeless experiences.

“Youth homelessness isn’t something you can always see. We might not realize it, but for so many of us, our friends and classmates may leave school and go to a shelter, not a home,” Ortega stated in a press release. “Talking to people who are my age, near my hometown, who have overcome homelessness was powerful and inspiring. I’m immensely proud to be a part of ‘Teens for Jeans’ and help students make a difference for young people in their communities.”

People who want to help can visit DoSomething.org/Teens or text TEENS to 38383 to sign up for the campaign. Aéropostale will be rewarding a $10,000 grant to the school that collects the most jeans, and a $5,000 grant to the runner-up school.

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