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Charity Works: Kate Spade and Frye Offer Support to Food Banks + More

A monthly roundup of footwear brands and retailers that are participating in charitable causes. Share your news with us at web@footwearnews.com.

Feb. 25, 2021: The Kate Spade New York Foundation has announced a $25,000 donation to support Feeding Texas in the wake of last week’s deadly and devastating snow and ice storms. The food bank is the largest hunger-relief organization in the state and provides food, resources and assistance to more than 4 million Texans every year. “Our hearts go out to our colleagues, our communities and everyone in Texas affected by Winter Storm Uri,” Kate Spade New York CEO and brand president Liz Fraser said in a statement. “With millions of Texans left without power, clean water and in freezing temperatures, we hope this contribution will help to provide quick relief to the people who need it most. In these moments, compassion and kindness are critical, and we encourage those who are willing and able to check in on their neighbors during these unprecedented times.”

Feb. 16, 2021: Frye has launched a special spring collection with Feeding America and August Alsina. The footwear brand and R&B singer have partnered up to raise money for food banks in Alsina’s hometown of New Orleans. For every pair of Melissa and Bowery Boots sold in February, Frye is donating $10 to Feeding America to support food banks in New Orleans communities that are facing hunger and food insecurity. As part of the partnership, Alsina is featured in the brand’s spring 2021 campaign, which shows him in new sneakers and boots from the collection.

Feb. 12, 2021: The Skechers Foundation unveiled that its first-ever virtual Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk was a success of grand proportions. The annual event, which usually takes place in-person in California, raising over $1.8 million in 2020 to boost its donation total to over $15 million for children to date. Over $500,000 went to the non-profit organization Friendship Foundation with an additional $1 million going towards six education-based foundations; the final $200,000 was set aside for exceptional high school students nationwide as part of its annual scholarship program.

Feb. 4, 2021: The Two Ten Footwear Foundation is accepting applications for its 2021 college scholarships. The need-based program is available to footwear employees and their families who are attending or plan to attend an accredited two- or four-year college, university, nursing or vocational/technical school, for full or part-time study. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or eligible non-citizen. Awards of up to $4,000 can be renewed for a four-year period, with a GPA requirement of 2.5 or higher. The deadline to apply is April 1, 2021, and the selections will be announced in June.

Big Initiatives in January 2021

Jan. 27, 2021: Academy Sports + Outdoors has announced the donation of $150,000 to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Through a collaboration during the holiday season, the two released T-shirts featuring nine exclusive designs, with 25% of the purchase price benefiting the hospital. “During these challenging times, it’s more important than ever to give back to an impactful organization like St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital,” Academy chairman, president and CEO Ken Hicks said in a statement. “We were honored to partner with them on this unique opportunity, and we’re thankful to our customers for helping us support St. Jude’s mission.”

Jan. 26, 2021: Footwear brand Oofos has hit a major milestone in its long-standing partnership with the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, announcing it has donated a total of $1 million to the center over the course of four years. The Boston-based company created its Project Pink initiative in 2017, after one of its first employees, Duncan Finigan, was diagnosed with breast cancer. (Finigan lost her battle with the disease in 2019.) As part of its initiative, Oofos donates 2% of all sales from its website to cancer research throughout the year, and also organizes other fundraising efforts, including offering the Project Pink OOcloog, which gave 100% of proceeds to Dana-Farber and The Jimmy Fund for Cancer Research last fall. After seeing significant revenue growth in 2020, Oofos has committed to raising another $1 million for Dana-Farber and the Jimmy Fund — in 2021 alone.

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