Thread Together launching clothing hubs, vans to help Australians in need

Not-for-profit finding new ways to get new clothes into the hands of vulnerable Australians.

Not-for-profit fashion charity Thread Together is launching a new clothing hub in Darlinghurst on Wednesday, aiming to provide clothing free of charge to people in need.

The store will be located on Oxford Street, and will operate on an appointment-only basis, making it easier to keep customer numbers manageable while social distancing remains in play.

Thread Together was founded in 2012 in order to repurpose unused products of the fashion industry, and has since growth to over 200 fashion partners and has saved more than 2.5 million pieces from landfill, clothing over 350,000 people.

“Our model is very simple. We collect end-of-line brand stock from clothing providers. With the support of volunteers, the clothes are sorted by age, gender, and purpose, and then redistributed to people in need through charities and social service agencies across Australia. I think of it as redistributive justice,” said founder Andie Halas.

The new store is the latest in a string of expansions for the charity, which recently moved to a new warehouse in Botany and tripled the storage space it previously had to facilitate future growth.

“With the inevitable rise in unemployment that Australia will experience in 2020/21, and the ongoing need to service the devastated bushfire regions of Australia, Thread Together is planning towards the organisation’s biggest request for assistance, demand for product and challenges over the next two years,” the business said.

And, in partnership with St. Vincent’s de Paul, Thread Together will launch its next clothing hub in Eden, NSW, in the next few months.

Additionally, Thread Together recently partnered with Retail Apparel Group, Commonwealth Bank, Goodman Foundation and Bendon to create a fleet of four mobile wardrobes that are travelling the country to assist people in need.

Two of these wardrobe vans are currently servicing the Sydney metropolitan area, while another is permanently located in Wagga Wagga, and one is on its way to Moryua, NSW.

According to the charity, 13.3 per cent of the Australian population live below the poverty line in Australia – equating to 3.3 million people – and this number is likely to grow in the coming months as job losses mount and government stimulus is phased back.

“Thread Together is the most ethical response to fashion excess and is grateful for all the clothing we recieve, the thousands of corporate volunteers that assist us to pick and pack with purpose as well as the network of charities and social service agencies that assist us to clothe individuals, families and communities in need,” CEO Anthony Chesler said.