As many of you know, RuffleButts grew from our basement in Charlotte, NC to our current warehouse in Grapevine, TX. We made the move just 5 years ago. Both of our children were born in North Carolina and it will forever hold a special place in our hearts. With that said, we watched, along with the rest of America, as the state faced a devastating loss with Hurricane Florence. As the stats were posted over the following days, we were led to help. I am always amazed and touched by the human spirit of giving. I watched as people risked their own lives to save people and animals alike. I am always touched by the number of people that put their own lives on hold to help those affected by these disasters. I felt like we were falling short in our duty to help.
The timing just so happened to fall on the day my team was making a big decision on some products that we have here at our DFW warehouse. We had an order from a customer for a large amount of limited edition products...I give the credit to my hubby (also our COO) on this one...he suggested we decline the order and instead donate all of the clothing to those affected by the disaster. Genius - don't tell him I said that ;) ! We shared the idea with our team and they ran with it. Just a day later, we partnered with an incredible organization willing to transport and facilitate getting the apparel from us to the people who need it most.
With that said, I am both excited and proud to share that we have partnered with World Vision, an impressive organization dedicated to helping others both here in the US and also around the world. Within one week of Florence's landfall, World Vision had sent 12 full truckloads of emergency relief supplies. Their phase 1 deployment team has returned home and the phase 2 deployment team is in place to focus on relief efforts. They will continue to provide support over the next 3-6 months in the areas that need it most. And while we realize that thousands of ruffled outfits are not necessarily "emergency relief supplies", we are also aware that many people lost everything. It is our hope that this clothing brings those people a little joy in a time of sadness, and also helps them in a small way to get back to normal.
So, that leads me to the fun part...how can we share the joy of giving with our incredible customers?! You guys never cease to amaze me in your outpouring of support and enthusiasm for our little company. I keep thinking, what if we are able to combine that enthusiasm with the joy of ruffled giving?! So, here's what we came up with…
- We are going to give regardless, but we want to share this joy, so let's get you involved. We know not everyone has the financial ability to give thousands of outfits, so we'll do it for you!
- Starting today, we're sharing the opportunity to give simply by following @RuffleButts on Instagram. For every new "follow" we are giving another outfit. Want to give more, simply share the post and/or tag your friends & family, telling them to "follow" too!
- Our goal is to donate and distribute $200,000 (retail value) of apparel to those affected.
To be honest, I'm always torn on whether to give in our typical quiet way or to include our customers. I usually opt for the 1st route, but this time, I think we can rally together and do even more good as a team. The more followers we have on social, the bigger we grow. The bigger we grow, the more we can pay it forward. I hope you'll join us!!
We'll be sharing updates over the next few days as we rally together for this fun project. World Vision is arranging the team to pick up the goods as I type, so we'll have to do this quickly. Who's in? Ready, set, follow, share! Visit our IG page @rufflebutts (https://www.instagram.com/rufflebutts/) to join us!
You can visit https://www.worldvision.org/disaster-relief-news-stories/2018-hurricane-florence-facts to learn more about World Vision and how they are assisting in relief efforts following Hurricane Florence.