Fashion Takes Action is a non-profit, Toronto-based organization. Their mission:
to empower our members with the tools, ideas and community to create prosperity through positive social and environmental change.
Fashion Takes Action is currently crowdfunding their 2nd Design Forward Award. This award was created in recognition of the many talented eco fashion designers in Canada. This is what Sarah, from Fashion Takes Action, has to say about using crowdfunding to fund this awesome award.
Why did you decide to crowdfund this project in particular?
Last year we had a spectacular run with the first year of Design Forward – but it was run on “faith and favours” of friends, family and the awesome industry expertise of our volunteer advisors. This year, we’ll still be calling on a cadre of volunteers, but we thought we might try to raise some money to defray the research, marketing and project management costs of running the award. We decided to go to our extensive social media network. They love the work we do! So why wouldn’t they give small amounts to make Design Forward happen?
Have you ever used crowdfunding before?
No, but we’ve been exploring the idea since the spring.
Why did you decide to try crowdfunding with Fundchange?
It’s Canadian, non-profits can participate, the entry costs are small, and right now, there is a possibility we can win matching funds from Telus!
What are you doing to promote your project?
Facebook and Twitter messages on a regular basis and at different times of the day. We change-up the message so that we don’t sound like a broken record. We’ve also emailed friends, family, and members about the project, telling them what we need, about the time sensitive need for action, etc. We also give our supporters sample Tweets and Facebook messages to use so that there is less work for them. We also included our campaign in our latest newsletter.
What lessons have you learned about crowdfunding so far?
- Make it as easy as possible for people to give or LIKE the project (take action)
- Be very clear and succinct about what steps to take (include steps )
- Be clear about what the money is going towards and why it’s important (transparency and need)
What are your top tips for other organizations that are considering crowdfunding?
- Don’t stop telling your ‘crowd’ about how to take action and why it’s important. They may need to hear it 3 or 4 times before they take action.
- Do a count-down and let your followers know where you are in the standing.
Fashion Takes Action is changing the world through fashion. Here’s how:
No Sweatshops! Sweatshops are prevalent in developing countries, where employees work long hours in poor conditions and typically make 25¢ on a product retailing for $20.
No Toxic Chemicals! A single cotton t-shirt contains approximately 17 teaspoons of synthetic fertilizers and a teaspoon of pesticides.
Use Less Water! A single cotton t-shirt uses 1350 litres of water to produce, or the equivalent of 7 full bathtubs.
Protect Biodiversity! Textiles and clothing account for almost 7% of global trade, consuming a huge measure of the earth’s raw materials that rely on biodiversity i.e. natural fabrics, animal skins.
Consumption is inevitable…! In North America, the average person consumes over 36 kilograms of textiles per year, the equivalent of 36 pairs of jeans. Canadians alone spent $21.5 billion on fashion in 2009. Make your clothes work for the world.