What is happening in Ukraine is something that is never far from our minds at the moment, and when you are so far away it’s hard to know what you can do to help. However, Irish people are known for their selflessness and generosity and that has become very clear over the past few weeks.
We have seen countless fundraisers happening all over the country over the past month or so, and one such fundraiser was one organised by Irish businesswoman Pippa O’Connor. Through her business POCO, she raised an incredible €36,500 which going directly to the Irish Red Cross to help with the relief efforts.
In the new issue of VIP, which is out today, she shares with us; “Our Ukraine fundraiser was the least we could do. The final amount raised was €36,500. People were so responsive and so generous. Which the Irish people are anyway.”
Continuing she added; “You just feel so helpless, don’t you? Even today doing this shoot you’re feeling, should I even be doing it? The fundraiser was the least we could do. We allocated a certain amount of pieces on her the website to the appeal with all proceeds going to the Irish Red Cross.”
She went on to say that she never expected it to be as successful as it was, and is delighted to be able to do something to help amid the current conflict; “I thought it would take a couple to sell but within two hours all the sizes went, bar very few. The final amount raised was €36,500.”
Last year her fashion brand turned five and to mark the occasion she took a trip down memory lane as she shared a video and some snaps of where it all began.
The brand launched back in November of 2016 and the mum-of-three reminisced that they began just with a range of denims; “This night 5 years ago I introduced my brand to a packed room full of people in Dublin City Centre.”
“We launched the brand with just 5 styles of denim jeans. The vision was to always be a denim brand at the core of it all, but to introduced everyday capsule wardrobe pieces as the brand expanded.”
Since then they brand has expanded to include so much more. First to a range of super soft basic t-shirts and sweatshirts, and now with a full collection of shoes, coats, blazers and leather jackets so you can dress head-to-toe in POCO.
“5 years on its expanded to more than I imagined in this timeframe. Brian & I put everything into starting this business.. every bit of energy and money we had saved for- it was a huge risk for us.. but we were determined and never doubted the vision, nor did we listen to the naysayers.”
Pippa’s team at POCO have also gone on to launch a number of successful pop-up shops around the country, the most notable being in Kildare Village.
To read our full interview with Pippa, pick up the new issue on shelves now!