Cotopaxi announces partnership with True Colors United

Cotopaxi, a Certified B CorporationTM outdoor gear and apparel brand, announces its impactful partnership through the Cotopaxi Foundation with True Colors United (TCU) to support and invest in long-term solutions to the youth homelessness around the world, particularly for LGBTQ+ and BIPOC youth and young adults. The funding will support TCU’s programs in Latin America and the United States, focusing on training, education, youth action and technical assistance.

Founded in 2014 with a deeply rooted mission to fight extreme poverty through access to education, healthcare and livelihoods, Cotopaxi feels strongly aligned with TCU’s commitment to uplift and championing LGBTQ+ youth and the unique struggles they face amidst homelessness. TCU believes in creating a narrative of empowerment and opportunity to work with communities to ensure that all young people can be themselves while living in a safe environment.

“Cotopaxi aims to promote inclusivity and fight marginalization, which includes supporting people from diverse backgrounds and lived experiences,” says Charlie Clark, director of donation and cause marketing at Cotopaxi. “We partnered with TCU in hopes of creating a long-term partnership focused on supporting LGBTQ+ people, due to the disproportionate likelihood of them being homeless or forced into refugee status, two factors that contribute directly to increasing levels of poverty. TCU has a strong track record of empowering individuals to uplift their communities, which is also at the core of who we are as a brand. It is essential for us to continue working to empower and support the communities in which we work. ”

Gregory Lewis, Executive Director and CEO of TCU, believes their new partnership with Cotopaxi fits well into their long history of partnering with companies whose primary mission is to bring about positive change. “We are excited to align with Cotopaxi as an impact partner,” says Lewis. “With equity and access at the heart of their mission as a brand, we are excited to see how the funds provided by Cotopaxi can create lasting impacts in the communities that we and Cotopaxi are passionate about.”

Sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) is directly linked to the increased prevalence of poverty and is a major driver of international displacement to refugee status – and in many cases can lead to “double displacement” in conflict zones, the loss of their homes and the support of loved ones. TCU is focused on creating long-term solutions to end LGBTQ youth homelessness, not quick, temporary fixes. Their work revolves around the following tenants:

  • Advocate at all levels of government to put in place protections for homeless youth
  • Train and educate direct service providers to give them the tools they need to make their programs and offerings more inclusive for the approximately 40% of youth experiencing homelessness who identify as LGBTQ
  • Empower youth with lived experience through programs like the National Youth Forum on Homelessness, so youth have leadership opportunities to effect change themselves
  • Provide technical assistance to community leaders – currently working with 77 different communities on the ground through initiatives such as the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Project

To learn more about True Colors United, visit https://truecolorsunited.org/
To learn more about the Cotopaxi Foundation, visit https://www.cotopaxi.com/pages/our-impact

About Cotopaxi

Cotopaxi is a carbon-neutral outdoor gear brand founded to create sustainably designed products that fight extreme poverty, inspire adventure and inspire people to do good. As a Certified B Corporation, we believe in using the power of business as a force for social, environmental and economic good. Our credo, Gear for Good, touches every aspect of our business. Cotopaxi is committed to manufacturing all of our equipment using reused, recycled or responsible materials by 2025. We allocate at least 1% of our annual revenue to the Cotopaxi Foundation which awards grants to exceptional non-profit partners carefully selected for their track record of improvement. the human condition and the fight against poverty. In 2021, we helped over one million people in extreme poverty through targeted grants to exceptional organizations with proven methodologies. For more information, visit https://www.cotopaxi.com

About True Colors United

True Colors United was co-founded in 2008 by Cyndi Lauper. We implement innovative solutions to youth homelessness that focus on the unique experiences of LGBTQ youth. Through a wide range of training and education programs, youth action, technical assistance and advocacy, True Colors United is creating a world where all young people can be themselves.

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