Charity entrepreneur launches Kickstarter campaign to provide underwear to people who need it most
FEMALE entrepreneurs Sarah Jordan and Lily Chong have launched a new business that will help to provide much needed support to women and children in Africa.
Inspired by a volunteering trip to Uganda in 2016, Sarah saw first hand the impact of women and children not having access to underwear and having spent a number of years in a senior management role at Oxfam - she returned to the UK determined to do something about it.
Y.O.U underwear has now launched with a Kickstarter campaign that’s running until mid December. Y.O.U stands for Your Own Underwear, and a proportion of every purchase goes directly to help support poor communities in Africa via Smalls for All, a Scottish based charity working directly with those in need.
The range includes men’s trunks and bikinis, boy shorts, thongs and bralettes for women, all of which are ethically made from super soft 100% organic, Fairtrade certified cotton that is breathable, long lasting and kind to skin.
Commenting on the business launch, Sarah said: “We saw this problem ourselves when we were volunteering in local communities as part of the Uganda Marathon in 2016. Seeing women and children who didn’t have access to underwear and were therefore excluded from school, work or even their community, especially during their periods. Underwear is something so simple and that we take for granted every day, but not having access to it actually has a much bigger impact that you think.”
“Y.O.U is Your Own Underwear as we believe everyone should have exactly that”.
“We want to be the world’s leading ethical underwear and lifestyle brand that empowers you to look good, feel good and do good.” Our products are made with 100% organic certified cotton that is breathable, kind to your skin, and better for the environment.
“Conventional cotton is the most polluting crop in the world, with a devastating impact on farmers, workers and the environment. When we discovered that 20,000 deaths a year are caused by pesticide pollution and there is a suicide rate equivalent to 1 every 30 minutes amongst Indian farmers, we couldn’t ignore that. It became fundamental to our business to use only organic cotton and we have followed this ethical approach through all elements of our supply chain”.
Y.O.U also has a buy one give one model, where every product you buy for yourself helps provide underwear to people in need. Y.O.U underwear has partnered with specialist Scottish charity Smalls for All to meet this commitment. Smalls supports vulnerable women and children in Africa with access to the basic necessities of underwear, so this partnership will directly help provide underwear to people in need.
“We believe that if we all make just a small change we can collectively have a huge impact, and even changing something as simple as your underwear can make a difference”.
Sarah has always been passionate about helping other people and she worked at Oxfam for many years, leading their digital team to engage supporters and also improve their programme work through the use of technology. “I’ve always done what I could to tackle inequality wherever it exists. It really motivated me when I worked at Oxfam and it’s great to be able to make a difference with my own business now too.”
Every product also has a cheeky message for the wearer inside it and Y.O.U is also committed to supporting positive body imagery - it’s all about confidence and the difference you can make. “There is so much pressure, particularly on young girls, to look a certain way and we wanted to bring more attainable images of beauty by using real models in our work.”
The Kickstarter campaign can be found at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/youunderwear/you-change-the-world-with-your-own-underwear?ref=FundedToday&utm_medium=referral&utm_source=1e.fnd.to