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Supported charities:

The supplier has partnered with many charities over the

years. Some of its long-standing relationships include Christmas in the City, Wellness

Warriors, Circle of Hope, Catie’s Closet and Charles River Watershed Association. This

year the company has further expanded its philanthropic initiatives with the launch of

a new program, Colors for a Cause. This new program leverages the company’s No. 1

selling style, the New Englander®, to help create awareness and raise funds for national

and local charities.

Program structure:

Charles River Apparel’s mission is to create a community and

environment that is passionate about giving back. For the family-owned company,

this message starts with owners Deb and Barry Lipsett. The company’s giving program

touches the lives of every employee at Charles River Apparel through volunteer

opportunities for employees and their families, toy, food and clothing drives, monetary

donations and in-kind donations. But the company also understands that employees

may want to give back to other organizations outside of the established partnerships. In

2016, the Employee Volunteer program was created to give employees the opportunity

to take a day off work to give back to their charity of choice. Employees are also

encouraged to donate a Charles River Family 4 Pack (four Charles River Apparel New

Englander® pieces) to a charity of their choosing as an auction or raffle item to raise

funds for an organization in need.

Charles River employees from its distribution warehouse, IT, HR, production and marketing departments,

as well as owner Deb Lipsett (third from left), spent a rewarding day last August at a “Fill The Bus” event

through Catie’s Closet. The employees sorted and bagged donated apparel to be distributed to discreet

“closets” at schools where students in need can gather toiletries and a change of clothing they might

otherwise not be able to afford.

Deb Lipsett, Co-Owner

(pictured with her husband

and co-owner, Barry)

What does giving back mean to Charles


While there are many causes and

charities we support, Christmas in the City

is an organization that is extremely near

and dear to our hearts. This charity stands

out because it is a 100-percent volunteer

organization that gives homeless children

and their families a holiday event that is

truly spectacular. Christmas in the City

gives the employees a sense of value and

allows them to get involved in a variety of

ways—from participating in our toy drive,

to giving their time over a two-day period in

December. In fact, more than 50 percent of

our employees are involved during one of our

busiest seasons of the year. In addition to

contributing $10,000, Charles River Apparel

donates 3,000 jackets for homeless families

and creates a decorated piece of apparel to

incentivize donors who give more than $500.

What advice do you have for other

companies that want to start a charitable

giving program

? Be open to the idea. It

is not about the award or recognition that

may come with the opportunity to give.

A charitable giving program is about the

joy of giving back. It is about the sense of

pride employees feel with being associated

with a company that looks beyond itself.

Find something that you and your team

feels strongly about. Having flexibility




The Heroes Among Us



MAY 2017