The family-owned business making a difference during Homelessness Week.

1 – 7 August is Homelessness Week, and one special corporate partnership is providing vital support to people living on the streets.  

Family-owned sustainable outdoor brand, Nakie, has partnered with the St Vincent de Paul Society (Vinnies) to donate 1,500 lightweight blankets to those sleeping rough across Australia. 

Nakie co-founder, Tegan Gilroy, first thought of the idea when she saw the much-loved Vinnies CEO Sleepout. She reached out to the charity’s corporate partnership manager, Sheree Dunn, who worked quickly to pull together a list of distribution points across all eight Australian states and territories, based on level of need.  

Not only do the blankets provide much-needed warmth, but they are also sustainable. Each blanket is made of 54 recycled bottles meaning Nakie’s donation, valued at $300,000, has saved 81,000 plastic bottles from Australia’s waterways.  

Nakie are also donating a blanket to someone struggling with homelessness every time a blanket is purchased from their store in the month of August 

How Vinnies returned the love 

The charity’s quick response to Nakie’s offer meant this relationship was established in time for the cold winter months.  

Tegan and her team were invited to fly to Sydney and the ACT to help hand blankets out, but sadly COVID-19 put a stop to that. Fortunately, they were able to deliver the Brisbane donation themselves, where a tearful Vinnies operation manager spoke about how an already desperate situation for our nation’s homeless has got much worse with COVID-19. Bringing your supporters in, to see first-hand the difference they make, is undeniably meaningful. No doubt many of you are looking forward to the time when you can engage your supporters in the field once again.  

Vinnies will also acknowledge the support across their social media and discussions have already begun about how this partnership will continue in 2022.  

St Vincent de Paul Society National President, Claire Victory said that the charity is always looking for donations of goods like blankets for the simple fact they help keep people warm. 

“For someone who is experiencing homelessness or is at risk of homelessness, particularly rough sleepers, a blanket can be a vital lifeline, particularly during these winter months.” 

Thousands of people are struggling in this pandemic, and many are without the most basic essentials. This corporate partnership illustrates that amazing outcomes can be achieved without a single dollar exchanging hands and that, with the right acknowledgment, engagement and nurturing, these relationships can be sustained and grown.  

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