This Christmas, the UK charity ‘Help Refugees’ along with Creative Collective Glimpse, have teamed up together to open ‘Choose Love’.
This shop makes its mark by becoming the very first store, where customers can buy real gifts for refugees.The store which is located in Soho is inspired by the iconic slogan Choose Love that was designed for Help Refugees by Katharine Hamnett. It opened on the 24th of November.
Choose Love is seen as a learning space of customers who come in, to get to informed about the refugee crisis, and at the same time doing something to help and support the cause. From the beginning until the end, the items displayed are themed around different stages of a refugee’s journey. Though the pieces that are placed, the shop intends to narrate a story from their perspective. This mainly focusses on “arrival, camp and their future.”
The range of items includes medical equipment, blankets, socks, baby grows, sanitary towels, and mobile phone credit. The items of sale are all distributed by Help Refugees on the front lines of the refugee crisis, and moreover it gives an insight to the customers about each item, as it will be accompanied with information on why it was chosen for sale. The prices kept for each gift vary from £4.99 to £499 making it affordable for everyone, moreover there is an option to even ‘buy the store’.
All the funds raised at Choose Love will go directly to Help Refugees to support their vital work across Europe and the Middle East. I even got a chance to interact with James Turner, who is the co-founder of Creative Collective Glimpse, and also one of the main people who came up with the concept and design of the Choose Love store, to talk more about the idea of story-telling for each piece. He said: “The store starts off with things like emergency blankets, water-when they first arrive, and then there is a section about shelter which are things like tents, sleeping bags and hygiene kits and the final section is the future, and how refugees do a lot of work with education, with getting people back into proper homes, and helping them build a life in a new country.”