How 13 Shoe Brands and Retailers Are Helping Fight the Australian Bushfires

As Australia continues to be devastated by deadly bushfires, many footwear companies with ties to the country are pitching in with fundraising efforts.

Over 25 million acres have been burned throughout the country since the fire season began; at least 28 people have died and entire towns have been evacuated. More than 1 billion animals, from koalas and kangaroos to several endangered species, are feared dead across the fire zone, over 800,000 of them in New South Wales. Although many affected areas have experienced rainfall and a slight dip in temperatures in the past week, the damage is far from over — particularly, experts say, because climate change could exacerbate the fires’ worst effects.

Here’s how 13 footwear brands and retailers are contributing funds and raising awareness.

Keen

From Jan. 15 through Jan. 21, Keen will donate 10% of all Keenfootwear.com and Keen Garage sales to the Australian wildfire relief, with a focus on providing firefighting brigades in New South Wales with advanced equipment and gear. The Portland, Ore.-based outdoor brand is donating more than 3,000 pairs of workboots to firefighters, and Keen employees are sewing “marsupial pouches” for wildlife rescue organizations to give to injured and displaced animals.

“As a values-led organization dedicated to conservation, supporting communities impacted by natural disasters has been part of our DNA from the beginning,” said Chris Enlow, Senior Director of Keen Effect. “Our hearts go out to the people and wildlife effected by these devastating fires and we hope our actions will inspire others to help.”

Coach

Coach Foundation is making a $100,000 gift (AU$145,000) to the Australian Red Cross through the foundation’s fund at CAF America for relief and recovery efforts that support people affected by the country’s bushfire crisis. Additionally, the luxury brand will match employee contributions to the Australian Red Cross or to a qualified relief organization of one’s choice through the Coach and Kate Spade New York foundations.

“Our hearts go out to the countless number of people affected by the bushfires,” said parent company Tapestry’s CEO and chairman, Jide Zeitlin. “While what has been lost cannot be replaced, we want to help the affected communities repair and rebuild in the wake of this disaster.”

Alias Mae

The Australian shoe label posted on Instagram about its donation to WIRES Wildlife Rescue and directed followers to organizations including Animals Australia, The Salvation Army Australia and NSW Rural Fire Service.

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A lot of Aussies have dug deep this week and substantial money has been raised to assist the animals, people and services involved in the Australian Bush Fires. At AM we have great respect and admiration for all those who have contributed in any way. Alias Mae has donated to @wireswildliferescue and if you have not yet supported a charity we urge you to do so. @redcrossau @salvosau @wireswildliferescue @nswrfs @cfavic @animalsaustralia @givit_aus @foodbankaus We also thank those sharing information and support. We’ve listed a few names below who have done an incredible job – @megankgale @celestebarber @lisa_wilkinson @elle_ferguson @emmahawkins_ @itskiirby @jadetunchy @nadiabartel @jacquiealexander @brookehogan1 If you believe any other charity, organization or person deserves a shout out, please comment below. AM x

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Afterpay

The buy-now-pay-later service, based in Melbourne, Australia, has pledged AU$200,000 ($137,000) to the Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund on behalf of its employees and has set up a donation page for customers. The company has also contacted its 42,500 retail partners to encourage them to promote donations, which support emergency response efforts, volunteer training and more, and it said Steve Madden and others have been eager to help. “We know that when a disaster happens, especially on our doorstep, Australians have an incredible ability to band together to help one another,” said Afterpay CEO Anthony Eisen in a statement. “Our thoughts go out to all the families and individuals that have lost their homes or local businesses, as well as all the firefighters and volunteers working around the clock.”

Bared Footwear

The podiatrist-designed brand said on Instagram that it donated $15,000 to the Salvation Army “to support the amazing work they are doing on the ground.”

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In response to the devastating fires across our beautiful country, we have donated $15,000 to @salvosau to support the amazing work they are doing on the ground. If you are looking for ways to help, here’s where you can donate to those in need. Every little bit counts. To help @salvosau assist with disaster relief https://www.salvationarmy.org.au/donate/make-a-donation/donate-online/?appeal=disasterappeal To help @redcrossau with the relief and recovery efforts https:/www.redcross.org.au/ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ To help wildlife victims donate to @wireswildliferescue https://www.wires.org.au/donate/now ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Donate to the @foodbankaus to help provide food to those in need: https://www.foodbank.org.au/?state=vic ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ To help the @cfavic you can donate here : https://www.cfa.vic.gov.au/about/supporting-cfa To help the @nswrfs you can donate here: https://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/volunteer/support-your-local-brigade ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ To help the South Australian Country Fire Service donate here: https://cfsfoundation.org.au/donate We love our sunburnt country. Please stay safe ❤️ #baredcares

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Blundstone

Boot brand Blundstone — whose manufacturing and warehousing facilities and its headquarters are located in the Australian cities of Hobart and Melbourne — has donated nearly $70,000 worth of boots for volunteer firefighters, as well as financial support to those displaced by the bushfires.

Merrell

On Tuesday, the outdoor footwear brand announced a $25,000 donation to WIRES, Australia’s largest wildlife rescue.

Country Road

The homegrown chain said that it donated $100,000 to the Red Cross relief fund and encouraged followers to support the cause.

Senso

Sydney-based Senso is offering shoppers the chance to win a AU$1,000 ($687) voucher by purchasing AU$20 charity raffle tickets; all proceeds will go toward helping those affected by the fires.

Spell & The Gypsy Collective

The boho Byron Bay brand has taken a multipronged approach to its charitable efforts, donating $20,000 to the Country Fire Authority and participating in a two-day fundraising event on Jan. 8 and 9 hosted by Chris Hemsworth. It is also relaunching several retired styles, with 100% of profits going to bushfire organizations; pre-orders for the pieces begin at 10 a.m. AEDT Jan. 9 and end at midnight on Jan. 12.

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This artwork by @lignestudio.co 🕊 When you’ve donated to as many bushfire appeals as you can, or maybe your bank balance doesn’t allow you to make a monetary donation, there are still many ways you can show support, help and take action 💗 I know as I write this people are still suffering, lives have been lost and our world has changed forever. Even through the shock and grief though we are rallying, our country, the world even (thank you @celestebarber!!) is coming together in the wake of these cataclysmic events. It is needed. It’s far from over and we have so much work to do 🙏🏽 I’ve been completely overwhelmed by how many texts and DMs I’ve got from my friends and peers, from my team and even former team members who no longer work for us but still want to help, all messaging over the weekend offering their support with any fundraisers we have planned… thank you thank you! Together we can do big stuff!🙌🏽🤍 @lizzyabegg

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St. Agni

Byron Bay’s St. Agni donated 100% of online sales on January 5 to the Red Cross, raising $17,242. It has also partnered with fellow Aussie brands Velvet Canyon and Flash Jewellery on a prize pack worth $3,000; participants just need to donate $1 or more to one of the select organizations and submit their receipt by Jan. 10.

Tony Bianco

The shoe brand will be donating 100% of online and in-store profits on Saturday, Jan. 11, to the Red Cross and WIRES Wildlife Rescue on behalf of its team members. “We would like to thank all the firefighters, emergency services and volunteers who are working tirelessly to offer relief. You are heroes,” it wrote on Instagram.

Wittner Shoes

“Words cannot express our devastation about the bushfires ravaging our beautiful country,” the brand wrote in an Instagram post, noting its donations to the Red Cross and to Drought Angels, an organization dedicated to supporting farmers and rural communities. “We invite you to join us in donating any amount, no matter how large or small, to make a difference to those in need.”

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Words cannot express our devastation about the bushfires ravaging our beautiful country. We extend our heartfelt thanks to the people and organisations that are devoted to helping others during this crisis. The Wittner family and team has already donated to the @redcrossau and @droughtangels and is working on additional ways to support those affected as this disaster continues. We invite you to join us in donating any amount, no matter how large or small, to make a difference to those in need. Donate to fire services directly via @cfavic and @nswrfs Support relief and recovery efforts via @redcrossau @salvosau @vinniesshops @giveit_aus @droughtangels @foodbankaus Help with wildlife aid via @wireswildliferescue @rspcavic @rspcansw

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