TOKYO - Fast Retailing Co., Ltd. ("Fast Retailing") today announces the launch of the 10 Million Ways to HELP project at UNIQLO and GU stores across 16 countries and territories, to clothe a growing number of refugees worldwide. Distribution takes place through the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), with which Fast Retailing maintains a long-standing global partnership, as well as other Non-Governmental Organizations. The campaign runs in Japan from October 2 and overseas from mid-October, to encourage customers to donate lightly used UNIQLO and GU clothing at their stores.
UNHCR estimates that the number of women, men, and children forcibly displaced owing to armed conflict and other causes reached 59,500,000 by the end of 2014 - the highest since the end of World War II - prompting Fast Retailing to respond. Fast Retailing has been implementing an All-Product Recycling Initiative to provide clothing to refugees since 2006, and in 2011 became the first company headquartered in Asia to establish a global partnership with UNHCR. As part of the initiative, Fast Retailing has also launched a drive to collect clothing from employees.
Around 90% of the clothing that Fast Retailing has collected to date through its All-Product Recycling Initiative has been in wearable condition. As of the end of April 2015, more than 10 million items from the company had been delivered to refugees in 37 countries by UNHCR, including those in Jordan, Syria, Thailand and Nepal. Please find further detail at the following link:
As another contribution to alleviate the plight of displaced people, from 2011 Fast Retailing has operated an internship program at UNIQLO stores in Japan for refugees and their family members, offering invaluable work experience to promote their self-reliance.