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·       New innovative knitwear pop-up opens where every jumper tells the story of a child helped by Save the Children

·       Curated collection of pre-loved knits brings to life the stories of 91 children – the number of young people helped by the charity every minute

New research from Save the Children has revealed that the British public will celebrate Christmas more sustainably than ever this year – with two thirds opting for a pre-loved outfit and over a half looking to re-use or recycle items at home.

Responding to the nation’s love for pre-loved, Save the Children has today opened a   unique pop-up store in London’s Covent Garden featuring a collection of sustainable knits – each one named after a child helped by the charity -ahead of Christmas Jumper Day (Thursday 7th December).

With over two-thirds of Brits (69%) opting to shop their own wardrobe or second-hand for this year’s festive functions, the Story Knits store enables the public to pick up a pre-loved jumper and take home a story that connects them with the cause and gives more children a better future.

Each handpicked knit, is named after an individual child supported by the Save the Children and carries their story on its label. The collection, provided by Beyond Retro, the UK’s biggest vintage retailer, runs to 91 jumpers, representing the number of young people helped by the charity every minute across the world. These include Junior, age 16, who was taught to grow climate-resilient crops to adapt to climate change in the Soloman Islands, and Kiki whose family uses a Save the Children supported food pantry which provides cheap, nutritious food and activities to children living in one of the UK’s most deprived areas.

According to a survey of 2,000 Brits commissioned by Save the Children, this year will see most of the nation embrace pre-loved this Christmas. More than (52%) are choosing to recycle, repurpose and reinvent items at home in a bid to be more eco-friendly and 41%* plan to take part in Christmas Jumper Day sustainably this year.

One in five 16-34 year olds will opt to buy a pre-loved outfit for their Christmas party and 39% of those involved in a Secret Santa this year will be sharing a sustainable gift.

Luke Evans, who is currently starring in Backstairs Billy at the Duke of York theatre, took time out from the stage to open the store.  A long-time supporter of Save the Children, Luke has been an ambassador for more than seven years and visited projects in his home country of Wales as well as Pune, India.

Talking about Story Knits, Luke said: “Walking into Story Knits really got me in the festive mood and gave me a totally unique jumper to see me through winter.

“Story Knits doesn’t just give you the opportunity to pick up a trendy knit without compromising the planet, it brings you closer to the incredible work of Save the Children and the young people they’re helping around the world, including in the UK.

“I chose to wear the ‘Simon’ jumper when I visited the store as his story really stood out to me. When conflict at home separated the 13-year-old from his family, Save the Children helped to reunite them so they could enjoy a safer future together. Amazing!”

Since launching in 2012, Christmas Jumper Day has raised a total of £35 million to help transform the lives of children in the UK and across the world, get the food, healthcare and education they need.

Thirteen years on and now one of the Save the Children’s biggest fundraising events, the charity is hoping 2023 will raise more than £3.2 million to help children all over the globe.

Gareth Owen OBE, Humanitarian Director for Save the Children said: “Every year we love seeing the fun and fabulous knits people wear, and how they bring friends, families, schools and workplaces together. 

“We are really excited to be opening Story Knits to take this year’s fundraiser one step further and drive home why putting on a festive jumper and taking part is so important.  The store is a powerful experience and hopefully gives wearers a more meaningful and memorable connection to the cause too.”

Want to get involved in Christmas Jumper Day 2023?

·       Taking part is easy: get together with friends, family, colleagues, or classmates, throw on your favourite sustainable sweater or second-hand jumper, and donate £2 (or £1 for kids) to Save the Children.

·       Don’t have a suitable sweater?  If you don’t have a jumper for Christmas Jumper Day and fancy giving a pre-loved one a new home visit The Story Knits Store in Covent Garden (5-7 Shorts Garden, London WC2H 9AZ).  The pop-up will open on Friday 1st December and close on Christmas Jumper Day (Thursday 7th December).  Opening times are [insert opening times].  Jumpers cost £30 with the option to donate more if you so wish. 

To find out more and sign-up, visit www.christmasjumperday.org.