As the coronavirus continues to devastate Italy — 250 deaths were recorded over the past 24 hours alone — the fashion industry is taking action.
Over the past week, a number of major players — from top influencer Chiara Ferragni to fashion giant Kering — have donated millions of euros to hospitals in Italy working to treat victims.
Today, several more big names announced their own efforts. Donatella Versace said she and her daughter, Allegra, were making a personal donation of 200,000 euros to the intensive care unit of the San Raffaele hospital in Milan. “In times like this, it’s important to be united and support however we can to help all those who are in the front lines, fighting every day to save hundreds of lives,” the designer wrote on Instagram.
In a separate Instagram post, the fashion legend also thanked a Chinese delegation of medical experts who brought 30 tons of medical equipment, including masks and respirators, to Rome in an effort to aid health care workers.
Italy is now the second most impacted country in the world after China, and today the World Health Organization declared Europe as the new epicenter of the virus. (The overall coronavirus death toll in Italy has reached 1,266, according to government figures, with 17,600 infections overall.)
While Milan and the entire Lombardy region — one of the country’s shoemaking hubs — are the hardest hit parts of Italy, other high-end footwear manufacturing areas, including Marche, have also been seriously effect.
On Friday, Giuseppe Santoni, the Santoni namesake, said he was launching a fundraiser to help hospitals in the Marche region — and kicked it off with a donation of 50,000 euros. (Overall, he hopes to raise 500,000 euros through donations.)
“Marche is the region I belong to, the region where my family, my company, my people are grounded,” said the entrepreneur in a statement. “It’s a beautiful territory that is suffering and that has to prepare to face the even more difficult emergencies that are expected in the next few days. Now I want to give to this region that has always given so much to me.”
Sergio Rossi also said today that from March 14 to 20, it is donating 100% of proceeds from sales on its website to ASST Fatebenefratelli Sacco hospital in Milan. The company made a donation of 100,000 euros to support the fight — and is encouraging customers to support the cause.
“Today we’re facing a difficult and unprecedented situation that makes us reflect on the importance of the power of our humanity. It’s a critical moment for us, and it’s crucial to rediscover the humanity that distinguishes us and the courage and strength to support each other,” the company said in a statement. “We want to be part of the rebirth of the country.”