UPS is working with two non-profit organizations to upcycle thousands of old uniforms into dog leashes.
According to a press release, UPS is donating the finished leashes to Best Friends Animal Society’s Lifesaving Center in Atlanta, where they’ll be used and also go home with dogs adopted at the center.
“I love these leashes,” said Lisa Barrett, senior manager, Southeast Region, Best Friends Animal Society in the press release. “We’re so appreciative of UPS’s generous donation and the work of the skilled weavers at re:loom, and we can’t wait to send them out with our dogs to their new homes.”
UPS announced last September that its iconic brown uniforms were getting the first significant makeover in nearly a century. But, that created a challenge: What happens to the old uniforms?
Through partnerships with the Initiative for Affordable Housing’s re:loom and Best Friends Animal Society’s Lifesaving Center in Atlanta, UPS is keeping the old uniforms out of landfills and incinerators and upcycling them into fashionable new dog leashes. The program has kept 118 tons of old uniforms out of landfills and incinerators in the first six months.
Since 2009, re:loom has trained homeless and low-income individuals to make beautiful, hand-woven products from excess textiles. Using a grant from the UPS Foundation, weavers at re:loom’s Scottdale, Georgia, weavehouse are fashioning about 1,200 leashes from old UPS uniforms.
“These old uniforms were worn by our 125,000 hard-working drivers who deliver nearly 22 million packages and documents a day across the globe,” said Patrick Browne, director of sustainability at UPS. “The last thing we wanted to do was to dump them in a landfill. That’s why we’re so happy to partner with these amazing non-profits to give them a second life and do something special in our community.”
More information on adopting a pet from Best Friends’ Lifesaving Center in Atlanta is available by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
As for the new UPS uniform makeover? According to the press release, the new uniforms have a more contemporary look, with updates designed to improve driver comfort, safety and performance. Many of the changes to the uniform include using performance fabrics with improved stretch for better range of motion.
Headquartered in Atlanta, UPS serves more than 220 countries and territories worldwide. UPS was awarded America’s Best Customer Service company for Shipping and Delivery services by Newsweek magazine; Forbes Most Valuable Brand in Transportation; and top rankings on the JUST 100 list for social responsibility, the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index, and the Harris Poll Reputation Quotient, among other prestigious rankings and awards. The company can be found on the web at ups.com.
re:loom is a program of Initiative for Affordable Housing (IAH), and a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization in Decatur, Georgia. Founded in 1990 with one home and one homeless family, IAH’s mission is to provide permanent, affordable housing to homeless and low-income families in metro Atlanta. For more, visit www.reloom.org and www.affordablehousingatl.org.
About Best Friends Animal Society
Best Friends Animal Society is a leading national animal welfare organization dedicated to ending the killing of dogs and cats in America’s shelters. In addition to running lifesaving programs in partnership with more than 3,100 animal welfare groups across the country, Best Friends has lifesaving centers in New York City, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Salt Lake City, and operates the nation’s largest no-kill sanctuary for companion animals. For more information, visit bestfriends.org.