Stay up to date on what is currently available within your YMCA and H2O centres on our COVID-19 Updates page

Kelowna City Councillor, Loyal Wooldridge, has come up with a unique way to help the local economy tackle challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Wooldridge has conceptualized the MADE IN YLW campaign, designed to support small business and charity alike, with cash flow at the forefront.

Wooldridge, a small business owner himself, has partnered with local creative guru Ignite Design and Fleek Factory to develop and produce shirts and market bags that promote supporting local business. You Are Collective stepped up to offer wholesale and retail orders, they are a social enterprise supporting mental health and community connection which is very needed at this time. Retailers are able to purchase the products at cost and offer them to their customers at an affordable price, keeping up to 50% of the profit to rebuild their business.

“With the Province of BC easing restrictions on various businesses many are looking to reopen and emerge stronger than ever, but they have to overcome the hurdle of cash flow,” says Wooldridge. “These past few months retailers and charities have faced closures or significant operational reductions to do their part to ‘flatten the curve’. Now, they have to rebuild and reinvent themselves in order to survive.”

The MADE IN YLW campaign will also support local charity. Each shirt and bag will have a portion donated to the YMCA of Okanagan, which helps individuals of all ages and backgrounds reach for physical and mental health in their lives. The YMCA will aid in the administration of wholesale orders and in turn receive a donation from each item sold.

“This initiative couldn’t come at a better time both for businesses who have suffered during the pandemic closures and charities like the YMCA who now, more than ever, will need solid footing in order to lift those most impacted by the COVID health and economic challenges.” Says Amy Gopal, YMCA Board Director.

“We’re so grateful to be part of this campaign; it speaks to everything we stand for in uniting and supporting the community,” says Rebecca Steinhubl of You Are Collective. “We’ve felt the challenges and pressures during these times, both personally and as a small business. Any way we can let people know that they’re not in this alone, we want to help!”

Wooldridge, along with the local collective, hope the campaign will inspire the greater community to shop local, frequent their favourite small businesses, and keep kindness top of mind. “It’s the power of community,” says Wooldridge. “We worked together for the physical health of the community, now it’s our opportunity to use that same energy of community to work on our economic health.”

Retailers can purchase wholesale orders at MadeInYLW.com. The t-shirts and bags retail for $40/shirt and $10/bag. $5 from every shirt and $1 from every bag will benefit the YMCA.

Contact: Loyal Wooldridge
250-878-2187 | Loyal@LoyalKelowna.com