THE TOMS ANIMAL INITIATIVE
Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors is thrilled to announce they are partnering with TOMS, launching the TOMS Animal Initiative shoe collection for the first time in Australia. These vegan, recycled shoes will be sold from December 3 at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, as well as online.
Through the TOMS Animal Initiative, TOMS partners with select non-profit animal conservation organisations to drive awareness and funding for global animal protection. Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors, the charity started by Steve and Terri Irwin in 2002, was chosen due to their similar values to TOMS and a shared passion and dedication to wildlife conservation.
The partnership will help wildlife, with proceeds from sales going directly to Wildlife Warriors and other wildlife charities such as Virunga National Park’s efforts to save mountain gorillas and the Clinton Foundation with Wildlife Conservation Society to protect African Elephants. It will also benefit those in need through TOMS One for One initiative where for every pair of shoes sold, TOMS will donate another pair to a child in need. One for One.
TOMS Chief Animal Lover Heather Mycoskie was inspired to start the TOMS Animal Initiative when she learned that wild lions are at risk of being extinct.
"I felt like there was so much we could do by coming together to save these and other majestic animals,” says Heather. “Combining my love for animals and my love for TOMS made perfect sense.”
The first TOMS Animal Initiative collection, Virunga, supports Virunga National Park’s initiative to save mountain gorillas in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The second collection sees TOMS in partnership with the Clinton Foundation and Wildlife Conservation Society to protect African elephants that are being killed by poachers at unprecedented rates for their ivory tusks. When a person buys a pair of these shoes through Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors, it will support their conservation work with animals all over the world, ranging from tigers in Sumatra and cheetahs in South Africa, to elephants in Cambodia and koalas in Australia, and much more.
Both styles are available in the TOMS classic silhouette complete with the Virunga National Park logo and silhouette of the elephants whose survival is being protected. The collections are available in styles for men, women and children.
Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors are excited to be partnering with TOMS, with this only marking the beginning of an ongoing relationship between the two like-minded organisations.
In 2006, American traveller Blake Mycoskie befriended children in a village in Argentina and found they had no shoes to protect their feet. Wanting to help, he created TOMS, a company that would match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a child in need. One for One.®
Realizing that One for One could serve other global needs, Blake launched TOMS Eyewear in 2011 to help restore sight to persons in need with every purchase of sunglasses and optical frames. In 2014, TOMS Roasting Co. launched with the mission to provide clean water to developing communities with the purchase of premium coffee.
TOMS is in business to help improve lives. We identify a global need and create products to help address them. This simple idea is what makes us more than a company – we’re a movement that’s continually evolving.