The VF Foundation Announces $5.5 Million in Community Investments, Highlighting Efforts in Regenerative Agriculture, Greater Access to the Outdoors, and Support for Vulnerable Communities Worldwide
DENVER – (Sept. 28, 2021) – The VF Foundation, the private grantmaking organization funded by VF Corporation (NYSE: VFC), one of the world's largest apparel, footwear, and accessories companies, today announced its year-to-date contribution of $5.5 million to 60 organizations globally. The grant recipients were chosen based on their innovative contributions toward creating a more equitable and sustainable future.
Of the total $5.5 million granted, nearly $3 million supported causes aimed at creating more inclusive and accessible outdoor spaces; $1.2 million supported economic and community development; $1 million supported projects in sustainable innovation; and the remaining investments supported scholarships created to ensure more diverse representation in the apparel and footwear and outdoor industry.
“Now more than ever, we are focusing our investments on organizations that are actively creating a world that is more equitable, livable, and accessible to everyone,” said Gloria Schoch, Executive Director of The VF Foundation. “Our grant partners align with our core values and goals to create a more inclusive outdoors, empowering underrepresented talent in the apparel and outdoor industry and helping create a cleaner environment for the next generation.”
Fighting Climate Change with Regenerative Agriculture
The VF Foundation is helping mitigate the effects of climate change by focusing investments on regenerative agriculture as a transformative solution. The VF Foundation grant recipients in this space include:
- Forum for the Future: Forum’s Growing our Future is a collaborative, multi-stakeholder initiative that strives to accelerate the transition to regenerative agriculture in the United States. The support from The VF Foundation will help enable a diverse set of community stakeholders to activate their expertise, resources, and influence to shift the agriculture system to support farmer livelihoods, assure soils are restored and carbon positive, increase biodiversity, and advance racial justice and social equity.
- Soil Health Institute: In partnership with the Soil Health Institute, The VF Foundation is funding the implementation of farmer-to-farmer mentoring networks and economics research in Texas to make the local cotton economy more resilient and profitable, including mentoring interns from local HBCU Prairie View A&M University.
- Arizona State University Foundation: The VF Foundation is providing a second round of funding to ASU’s Carbon Cowboys Project, which explores regenerative cattle ranching methods including Adaptive Multi-Paddock (AMP) grazing in the Northern Great Plains of America as a promising climate change solution.
A More Accessible Outdoors, For Individual and Professional Pursuit
The VF Foundation is invested in creating more accessible opportunities to experience the outdoors, both as an individual pursuit and a career opportunity. To help promote increased participation of historically underserved communities, this effort includes working with organizations such as:
- Girl Scouts of the USA: The VF Foundation is supporting the Girl Scouts Love State Parks national program to invest in greater accessibility and foster a welcoming and inclusive outdoor experience for girls and families of color who have not traditionally explored the outdoors. A strong environmental stewardship theme will rally participants to clean up parks.
- Creatives Want Change: This partnership looks to foster and inspire Black creative talent in fashion and apparel beginning at the high school level and continuing into early professional development through pre-collegiate programming and mentorship initiatives.
- RAISEfashion: The VF Foundation is helping to cultivate a more diverse fashion and apparel industry, one that actively supports Black entrepreneurs and brands to advance the equity of Black talent in the United States. The RAISEfashion Designer Fund will help scale Black businesses in direct-to-consumer and wholesale channels through strategic investments and an advisory board of cross-functional, executive-level mentorship.
Economic Empowerment for Vulnerable Communities Globally
The VF Foundation is working to uplift diverse, vulnerable communities around the world. By engaging regionally focused organizations, the Foundation is helping to address core obstacles in community development while also aiding lasting economic improvement that will benefit generations to come. This funding is going toward organizations that mobilize resources to empower local decision-making and action, such as:
- The Resilience Fund for Women in Global Value Chains: The VF Foundation helped launch this groundbreaking new fund which brings together corporate investors, foundations, and NGO partners to invest in the health, safety, and economic resilience of the women who form the backbone of global value chains. The Fund aims to raise at least $10 million in pooled funding over three years to support locally driven solutions to the systemic problems that make women more vulnerable to crises like the Covid-19 pandemic. The initial 2021 funding will support women-led, women-serving NGOs in South Asia.
- Cambodian Children’s Fund (CCF): Investment in CCF’s Youth Leadership Camps seeks to help nontraditional students develop the ability to analyze their strengths and weaknesses, and to articulate their personal values to become models of social change and stewardship in their communities. Students experience leadership activities to boost confidence, grow trust, develop teamwork skills, think creatively, and challenge boundaries through outdoor exploration in Cambodia’s mountainous jungle terrain.
- Civic Center Conservancy: The VF Foundation is investing in Civic Center Conservancy to employ the unhoused in Denver, Colorado, and support their transition out of homelessness in partnership with Denver Parks and Recreation as part of Denver’s Downtown Area Plan. Additional grant funds are also supporting the Civic Center MOVES program to encourage people from all fitness levels and backgrounds to express themselves through the power of movement.
About The VF Foundation
Since its inception, The VF Foundation has donated more than $50 million globally to support non-profit organizations in driving movements for the betterment of people and the planet, including actions that define Worthy Work, embrace the fact that Outside Matters, and empower diversity, equity, and inclusion as we are Free to Be. Learn more at vfc.com.
Director, Corporate Responsibility Communications