PROMISES TO KEEP
The Promise Collection, which uses textiles and materials procured from all over the continent, draws its inspiration from various forms of traditional African dress. Comprising 17 pieces for women and 13 for men, the line marries the brand’s classic American silhouettes with bold, vibrant colors and prints.
As its ambassador, Holmes will help raise public awareness about Millennium Promise’s work, particularly in Ruhiira, Uganda, where the current campaign will concentrate.
As its ambassador, Holmes will help raise public awareness about Millennium Promise’s work in Ruhiira, Uganda.
She describes her trip to Ruhiira as a humbling experience. “I think what struck me most were the people and the incredible optimism they have, despite the challenges they face in life,” she says. “Millennium Promise has been able to make a difference in their lives—not only in the form of immediate support, but also by setting up a self-sustaining program for the future.”
As a Millennium Development Goal Global Leader, Hilfiger has a vested interest in Ruhiira, which he first visited in 2010. “I personally saw the conditions people lived in, but on the other hand, the progress that was being made by Millennium Promise and the optimism it brought to the villages,” he says. “The trip inspired me to raise even more awareness—as well as funds—in order to help this cause.”
Customers will be able to track the impact their purchase has on a person or village in Ruhiira.
Because he was a designer, Hilfiger turned to what he knew best: fashion. His travels culminated in light and easy pieces that evoke the blues, greens, yellows, and reds of the Ugandan landscape. “We’ve recreated our classic preppy styles—polos and cotton camp shirts, shorts, wrap skirts, swimwear, and dresses with African colors, prints, and motifs,” he says. “One some of the items the African influence is in the detailing and on others it’s more overt.”
On the Tommy Hilfiger website, customers will be able to track the impact their purchase has on a person or village in Ruhiira. Profits from the “Patchwork” dress, for instance, will help improve gender equality in Ruhiira, while the “Malawi” swim-short will support education.
“I’m impressed and proud that 100 percent of the proceeds will directly help the local people in Ruhiira,” Holmes adds.