COVID-19’s rapid spread poses an unparalleled problem for people all over the globe. The virus has caused widespread hysteria along with its tragic human toll, bringing stocks down to record lows and triggering drastic shortages of even tangentially related outbreak goods.
But the epidemic has also inspired displays of patriotism of an almost unparalleled scale, a small but vital reminder that there is no more tireless force than the human spirit in times of true crisis.
Corporations with the resources to help have risen to the challenge in the past few months, pledging millions of dollars to support the campaign in any way they can. When the spread of COVID-19 approaches pandemic-level proportions, major players in the fashion industry are getting involved to do their part, from financing campaigns to fight the virus to upgrading manufacturing facilities to better match the needs of hospitals and healthcare workers around the world.
Below is a list of some of who’s doing what and where. These are difficult times for all of us, so there’s a little consolation in realizing that so many of the companies we as customers trust so much in are doing the same for us now, and everyone affected by the virus, from Paris to Portland and anywhere in between.
A group of Italian hospitals and institutions, including the hospitals Luigi Sacco and San Raffaele, and the Istituto dei Tumori in Milan, along with the Istituto Lazzaro Spallanzani in Rome, were pledged EUR 1.25 million by the famous luxury company. The Armani Group also revealed today a new round of donations to local hospitals, and that all of its Italian production facilities have now converted to single-use medical overalls.
Earlier last month, Bulgari also made a donation of an unspecified sum to the research department of the Istituto Lazzaro Spallanzani in Rome, allowing the hospital to purchase a microscopic image acquisition system valued at around 100,000 euros.
The famous French style house declared throughout the end of the week it will begin creating face veils and other PPE supplies, pending endorsement from the French government.
Dolce & Gabbana
The Italian label has announced a ambitious initiative to work with Humanitas University to fund studies and more investigation into the cause of the virus.
Gucci announced that it plans to make two contributions to crowdfunding campaigns: first, in collaboration with Intesa Sanpaolo, to the Italian Civil Defense Department (Protezione Civile), and second, in support of the World Health Organization (through a joint campaign with Facebook), to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund.
The Swedish fast-fashion giant has contributed $500,000 to the Solidarity Response Fund for COVID-19 and has harnessed their supply chain to manufacture PPE to support hospitals and healthcare workers around the world. The business also enables global relief organizations to use their social media platforms for pandemic alerts as of late March.
The British shoemaker has announced that $500,000 will be donated to fund humanitarian efforts both in the home country of the company and around the world.
Top executives of the Swoosh, in conjunction with the company itself, revealed they are contributing more than $15 million to COVID-19 response initiatives, including contributions to Oregon’s national agencies and multinational foundations battling the virus around the world.
Nike also announced it is in the process of prototyping PPE products in collaboration with the University of Oregon Health & Technology.
Co-CEOs of Prada (husband-and-wife couple Patrizio Bertelli and Miuccia Prada) and Chairman Carlo Mazzi have donated two full intensive care and resuscitation units each to the Milan hospitals of Vittore Buzzi, Sacco and San Raffaele. Prada also today announced that its Perugia factory will manufacture 80,000 medical overalls and more than 100,000 masks for healthcare workers in the country.
The American lifestyle company today revealed it would donate $10 million to charities dedicated to fighting the virus, including $1 million to the CFDA initiative. It’ll also make 250,000 masks and 25,000 gowns for the hospital.
The Italian fashion house donated one million renminbi (or $143,748) to The Chinese Red Cross Foundation, and Donatella Versace and her daughter announced a personal donation of 200,000 euros to the San Raffaele hospital’s ICU in Milan. The Versace company also donates a total of $500,000 as of April in support of local initiatives in Milan in response to the pandemic.