When high school friends, Matt and Will, met up in Portugal in 2013, they probably did not expect to be running an apparel company together that benefits at risk Indigenous Australian children almost three years later.
Today, the two are co-owners of Society&Co. Apparel. The company, launching in March 2015, generates funds to provide Indigenous Australian children with the resources they need to succeed in their educational ventures.
According to the company’s website, the idea was sparked by a conversation Will had with a homeless man while on the subway in San Francisco. The man had shared his poetry with Will, telling of his life story which clearly showed the struggles he faced during his upbringing. It was evident that the man didn’t lack intelligence. Instead, he lacked resources and social capital necessary to improve his situation. Will shared this story with Matt when the two met up in Australia and the journey towards Society&Co began.
Society&Co began online in March 2015 as a way to spread awareness to a larger online community. As the community and the passion for the project began to grow, the company launched their first website in December 2015. With the launch of their website, they also introduced the beginning of their apparel venture with the launch of the Scholar Tee.
With the support of the online community, as well as the funds from the Scholar Tee, the company was able to award its first Indigenous Scholarship to Alyssa, an 11 year old Indigenous Australian who is one of 6 children to a single mother facing significant financial hardship. Alyssa was then able to purchase textbooks, uniforms, and other items necessary to further her education with the help of the Scholarship.
In June 2016, Society&Co expanded their apparel line to include the Stripe Long Sleeve Tee and Trucker, following the success of the Scholar Tee. With each purchase of a clothing item, 100% of the profits goes towards the Indigenous Scholarship Fund. Scholarships are then formed from the fund and sent to the company’s Indigenous impact partners, who then present the Scholarships to Indigenous children who appear to be missing out on an education. Donations can also be made to Society&Co to support the fund.
If you want to help support Society & Co’s mission, you can purchase clothing items from their online shop or make a donation. You’ll be helping students like Alyssa reach their full education potential.