Australian-born fashion and lifestyle brand Cotton On have partnered their philanthropic arm, Cotton On Foundation with US-based non-profit Born This Way Foundation, founded by Lady Gaga (pictured left) and her mother, Cynthia Bissett Germanotta, in 2012. Together, they aim to raise $5 million USD for global mental health, with R 2 500 000 being donated to provide mental health support for youth in South Africa.
“We’re honored to partner with Cotton On Foundation for our first global campaign amplifying our mission to build a kinder, braver world together,” said Lady Gaga, Co-Founder of Born This Way Foundation. “We are constantly working to uplift the stories of young people worldwide, and through this partnership, we invite everyone to practice kindness and learn how to better support one another. Our research tells us that kindness is one way we can support each other’s mental health.”
The two organisations came together to create a range of limited-edition products available from 1 September – 10 October 2023 with Cotton On donating 100% of the net proceeds to Born This Way Foundation, making Cotton On one of the biggest corporate contributors to global youth mental health resources and support in 2023. Customers can purchase items, including caps, T-shirts, tote bags, stationery, and a denim jacket online and in select stores globally. The ‘Kinder, Braver, Together’ product design was inspired by Born This Way Foundation’s mission of supporting youth mental health and working with young people to build a kinder, braver world.
Kinder, braver communities
“We are grateful for the support of Cotton On Foundation and the opportunity to expand our collective impact worldwide. Every day, we witness young people around the world leading and transforming the discussion around mental health and calling for increased resources to support themselves, their peers, and their communities,” said Cynthia Bissett Germanotta, President and Co-Founder of Born This Way Foundation. “We hope this partnership will accelerate the delivery of tangible resources, skills, and grassroots support necessary to build kinder, braver communities that value and improve mental health.”
Established in 2007, Cotton On Foundation has raised over $170 million AUD to support youth globally and is proud to be expanding their impact in the mental health space through this collaboration. Beyond the product line, the collaboration will also support Born This Way Foundation initiatives, including the ‘Be There Certificate,’ a free online course created in partnership with Jack.org, that provides participants with the knowledge to support peers facing mental health challenges. To ensure widespread impact, this partnership also calls on young people globally to nominate local mental health organisations in Australia, Brazil, Hong Kong, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Africa, Thailand, United Kingdom, and United States; selected nominees will receive funding up to R 2 500 000 ($150,000 USD) per country as part of Born This Way Foundation’s ‘Kindness in Community Fund,’ expanding the availability of resources to support mental health in communities where Cotton On operates.
Cotton On Foundation and Born This Way Foundation aim to impact young people globally and ignite a transformative movement that prioritises mental health and gives younger generations the tools to take action. With one in seven young people aged 10-19 worldwide experiencing mental health challenges, particularly depression and anxiety, and many unable to access support services, this partnership seeks to increase community-based mental health resources for young people and foster kinder communities, leading up to World Mental Health Day on October 10th, 2023.