Workers on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis are in need of shoes, and Allbirds is offering assistance.
As of Tuesday, the San Francisco-based brand is splitting the cost of donating a pair of Wool Runners with its customers. Shoppers also have the option to donate a pair directly themselves.
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“These are uncharted waters for everyone, and our challenges are dwarfed by those on the front lines,” the company wrote in an Instagram post. “But we’re optimistic that through your support, we can continue to make a positive impact on this crisis, together.”
The “buy-one, give-one” option comes in addition to a pledge Allbirds made last week to donate thousands of Wool Runners to members of the health-care community. The company says it has distributed $500,000 worth of shoes since last Friday but that it is unable to meet the huge demand for free footwear without the help of its consumers.
Shoes are an unexpected need among some health-care workers amid the coronavirus pandemic, and Allbirds is not alone in offering its assistance. Keen is giving away 100,000 pairs, valued at $10 million; Merrell has delivered 1,200 pairs of shoes and boots to Michigan-based health-care workers; and Crocs is offering free styles to health-care workers on its site as well as donating 100,000 pairs in conjunction with select medical facilities and organizations.
On March 14, Allbirds announced that it would close all U.S. and European stores from March 15 through March 27 as a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. All employees are receiving full pay and benefits during this time, the brand said.
Internationally, the coronavirus has sickened over 450,000 people. More than 20,000 fatalities have been recorded.
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