Hospice taps into social media
An Auckland charity is harnessing the power of social media in its quest to provide university students with affordable clothing.
Mercy Hospice Auckland and Instagram user Shanti Probst are working together on an initiative, called Conscious Fashion, which trialled a pop-up shop at the Unitec Institute of Technology last week.
Instagram is a social media website, owned by Facebook, that lets users share photos with followers.
The pop-up shop proved so popular, with students lining up to get in, that Mercy Hospice plans to roll out shops at other universities in Auckland.
Mercy Hospice Auckland retail operations manager Annie said it had a steady flow of students through all week, and at times there was not enough room in the store for customers.
The pop-up shop was a response to a Unitec study, released in May, which found one in six students were going without food or other necessities because they could not afford it.
‘‘We realised that university students needed affordable necessities, such as clothing, linen and heating, and that we could offer that,’’ Hurley said.
It also realised it needed to use social media to reach a youth demographic. That’s where Probst comes in.
Probst’s Instagram account @myconciouscloset advocates to reduce New Zealand’s landfills by inspiring shoppers to buy recycled fashion.
‘‘The world now consumes a staggering 80 billion pieces of clothing each year, so I have decided I am not adding to this insanity anymore,’’ Probst said.
‘‘I only buy secondhand and I aim to inspire others to do the same.’’
To promote the pop-up shop Probst posted to @myconciouscloset a collection of stylish outfits created out of clothes available at the pop-up shop.
The pop-up shop will be open until August 11 and offers winter clothes, linen, accessories, shoes and heaters - with all items costing under $20.
All proceeds go to patients living with a life-limiting illness cared for by Mercy Hospice Auckland.
This was the first time Mercy Hospice Auckland had collaborated with a social media user, such as Probst.
Hospice saw a huge line of customers when they opened their secondhand store at Unitec.