The Arbor School, a dynamic and forward-thinking school that nurtures a core belief in environmental mindfulness, responsibility, and sustainability, announced its partnership with a homegrown, sustainable, school uniform brand, Kapes. Partnering with the only provider of sustainable uniforms in the UAE, the Arbor School will offer parents and children ethically made school uniforms, free from harmful chemicals. Arbor is the first school to have a sustainable uniform in the UAE, and the only school in the world to adopt the EON Circular ID, also adopted by YOOX Net-a-Porter, Pangaia, Houdini Sportswear, Unspun (apart of the Ellen Macarthur Foundation Jeans Resign Program), and Nanushka.
The uniforms are made in their entirety from high-quality sustainable materials, including global organic textile standard (GOTs) certified organic cotton, 100% REPREVE recycled polyester, regenerated nylon, coconut shell, and use only non-toxic and non-harmful dyes. Commenting on the partnership with Kapes, Brett Girven, Principal of the Arbor School stated it as the perfect initiative to further the importance of sustainability to its community and cement it further within the core curriculum.
“As a part of the core vision for the Arbor School to develop and embed sustainability as a whole-school approach, we are excited to announce our partnership with Kapes, supplying 100 percent sustainable, organic uniforms to our community. School uniforms are a part of the retail and sustainability industry which causes a huge environmental impact as these garments typically are made from non-recycled synthetic fibres, like polyester, which sheds microplastics and ends up in landfills where they can take hundreds of years to decompose. There is also a large social implication, as it has been documented that some uniforms are made in unethical conditions in developing countries. With fashion being responsible for 10 percent of global carbon emission, a school uniform is a great tool for educating children, as well as adults, about sustainability – and one we wish to tackle alongside Kapes,” said Girven.
Through a unique QR code found in every single garment, Kapes and the Arbor School will be developing an incentive and reward system for parents and children to track the return of items. This initiative will therefore allow for the adoption of a scalable second-hand uniform program. Additionally, the QR code will allow students to learn more about that product’s journey as Kapes’ champions transparency of its products, offering auditable records verified by blockchain and confirmed promises such as the item being made from certified organic cotton. For every student at the Arbor School that purchases a Kapes uniform, the Arbor School and Kapes will also give a free uniform to a child in need in a developing country.
Matthew Benjamin, Founder and CEO of Kapes said the partnership with The Arbor School provided the perfect synergy with the Kapes vision and its mission to teach sustainability to future generations through school uniforms.
“Kapes is excited to be partnering with the Arbor School as we work together to be change-makers in regards to the sustainability in schools within the UAE and beyond. There is a lot of room for improvement when it comes to school uniforms and for years parents have rightly complained about the lack of quality, and they aren’t necessarily bought or worn with much pride. We at Kapes believe we play a vital role in empowering children to become change-makers by encouraging them to be more connected to the things they wear, the people who make them, and the places the pieces are made. As these children become adults, they will therefore hopefully be more conscious consumers and continue to pass this onto future generations. This partnership with The Arbor School is a great first step in seeing this change for the future,” said Benjamin.