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COVID-19 continues to have an impact on all aspects of our daily lives, there have been so many stories about people doing their part to help, but PR In Canada wanted to share some stories about Brands Supporting For Good.
Toronto-based Knix, a global manufacturer of intimates, has come to the table to do its part during their challenging times. Knix has secured over $150,000 in community donations for their PPE Campaign in just 11 days. These donations have allowed the brand to purchase 200,000 units of certified masks and gloves to hospitals and clinics across the country. Through a collaboration with the Robert Kerr Foundation, a Toronto-based private foundation committed to addressing the basic and urgent needs to improve the lives of children and the homeless, the initiative will expand the campaign’s reach to support a new group in need of PPE, the GTA’s homeless shelters and drop-ins.
The Robert Kerr Foundation has committed an immediate contribution of $100,000, bringing the Knix PPE Campaign to a current total of $250,000. To continue the momentum of the campaign and encourage other major donors to participate, the Robert Kerr Foundation will also match an additional dollar for every dollar Knix raises, up to $100,000. Donations provided by the Robert Kerr Foundation will go towards the purchase and distribution of PPE for homeless shelters, drop-ins and agencies in Toronto and the GTA, while Knix will continue to use community raised funds to provide PPE for frontline healthcare workers across Canada.
“People who experience homelessness are a vulnerable group. They live in environments conducive to infectious diseases, have exposed immune systems from underlying health conditions and are often transient, making it difficult to prevent transmission,” says Bri Trypuc, Executive Director of the Robert Kerr Foundation. “We are deeply concerned about infection rates and mortality among our vulnerable populations and of the frontline staff working tirelessly, at tremendous risk, to serve them. Prudent action to partner with the Knix PPE Campaign to help contain the virus that targets this population makes sense.”
Knix Founder & CEO, Joanna Griffiths and 26-year old brother, Dr. Chris Griffiths, started the Knix GoFundMe initiative on March 21, 2020. Dr. Griffiths had expressed concern that his hospital was running low on PPE and asked if Knix could help. The brand quickly mobilized their supplier base and leveraged their import and distribution expertise to secure access to much-needed masks and gloves for Canada’s frontline healthcare workers. The campaign successfully passed its initial fundraising target of
$50,000 within the first 48 hours of launch and, to date has raised $150,000 through community donations. Funds have been used to purchase over 200,000 units of PPE, including 40,000 N95 masks, 50,000 surgical masks and 110,000 pairs of gloves to go towards frontline healthcare workers across Canada.
Through a private PPE Registry form that the brand created to confidentially track supply requests from hospitals and clinics, Knix will be able to match secured products for donation with healthcare institutions that need them most. To date, the campaign’s PPE Registry has received requests from over 225 healthcare institutions across Canada, with 20% of respondents expressing the need for PPE within the next couple days, 50% within one week and 30% citing two-four weeks. While requests have come in nationwide, 60% are from Ontario, Knix’s home province.
“We know Canadians want to help, and now their dollars will go even further. Each dollar will now see the purchase of PPE for frontline healthcare workers and an additional dollar to service the needs of some of our most at-risk citizens and the incredible individuals that serve them. We are extremely grateful for the Robert Kerr Foundation’s generosity and commitment to help. Together our goal is to provide PPE supplies to every homeless shelter across the entire GTA ” Explains Joanna Griffiths, Founder & CEO of Knix.
The Robert Kerr Foundation challenges other Canadian Foundations and Major Gift Donors to consider matching their commitment and participating in the Knix PPE Campaign. “Our hope is to inspire other Canadian foundations and major gift donors in cities across Canada to give. Having understood that we are in a crisis (and I believe you will agree) that however much stress this is bringing to you as a funder, and how adversely affected your investment portfolio is, it is vastly compounded in the field and at the community level among our charity grant recipients.” Said Joel Rose, President of the Robert Kerr Foundation.
Knix will continue to raise community donations through their GoFundMe page for the purchase and distribution of PPE supplies for hospitals and health clinics across the country. The brand will subsidize all transportation and distribution costs for the supplies.