Not one to shy away from the political conversation, Levi’s just launched a capsule collection that puts refugees at the center.
Created by refugees and other vulnerable individuals at the Levi’s Cooperative Porto Alegre in Rovigo, Italy, the collection features clothing, totes and other apparel items made of recycled fabrics. The collection is available in select Levi’s stores in 13 countries across Europe and on its website, and proceeds from the collection will be donated directly back to Porto Alegre to continue serving its community.
The cooperative was initiated in 2001 by a group of social workers and volunteers to provide care for people who need it most, including the homeless, people with mental health issues, migrants, asylum seekers and refugees. Within the program is a sewing workshop led by fashion designer Rita Cassetta. Garments are made for and by individuals within the program, and workers are taught useful skills they can carry beyond the cooperative.
“We are witnessing the largest human migration in our lifetime with suffering on a scale that’s hard to comprehend,” Seth Ellison, Levi’s EVP and president of Europe, said. “But we are not powerless. We can take action personally, one individual at a time, or on a larger scale, as a company to help so many more.”
Recent reports indicate that Levi’s has a largely democratic audience, due in part to initiatives like this and its passionate stance on gun control. The brand has donated to organizations dedicated to ending gun violence, and this year, Levi’s CEO Chip Bergh drafted a letter signed by 200 CEOs formally requesting stricter gun control.
Bergh has also publicly spoke out about President Trump’s travel ban that blocked a number of individuals from entering the U.S., and remains committed to helping refugees.