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This quarter, UK-based retail app MallZee launched Lost Stock: a clothing box initiative aiming to support garment workers in Bangladesh during the COVID-19 crisis. Each box priced at GBP 35 (USD 44) contains at least three ‘mystery’ items of clothing including t-shirts, blouses and shirts that retailers had cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak. Before purchase, shoppers complete a questionnaire based on their style preferences and receive a tailored box of clothing within six to eight weeks. In partnership with the Saijida Foundation, each box sold provided a worker and their family with a parcel of essential items for one week. By the end of 2020, the project aims to support 100,000 families.
There are some impacts of COVID-19 that first come to mind; for you, perhaps they’re the ones playing out the most in your particular region. Maybe they include an increased sense of caution in public spaces, a newfound focus on sanitization or local businesses shutting down.
But if you’re looking to make a measurable difference right now, go a step (or many!) further to identify some of the virus’ second- or third-order consequences. Lost Stock is doing just that as it addresses two rising issues: these cancelled garment orders contributing to textile waste, which already accounted for 6% of waste on Earth, and fashion industry workers losing their jobs. Other brands tackling second-order, highly specific, yet still profound impacts of COVID? App Nannyfy in Spain pivoted to help nannies – whose work hinged on in-person interactions – keep working and offer virtual babysitting services for stressed-out parents. Basecamp took a stand against the rise in employee surveillance software, a consequence of WFH becoming the norm. In the Philippines, the government partnered with Grab to offer produce delivery and supply work for the nation’s farmers.
Follow the chain reaction of the major, recent events that have taken place, and identify the trickle-down – even indirect – effects. How might your organization address them?
The TrendWatching content team
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