Teaming up to make a difference, Southwest Airlines is giving new life to old airplane parts while helping recovering women through its new partnership with Unshattered.
Reuse with a purpose
Southwest Airlines’ Reuse with Purpose program focuses on sustainability by recycling old aircraft parts, like leather seats, and turning them into new products. The airline is expanding the global initiative by partnering with Unshattered, a nonprofit that employs women in recovery.
As part of the new partnership, Southwest will donate seat leather to Unshattered, where women will turn it into high-end travel bags and accessories. Each item is made and sewn by hand at Unshattered headquarters in New York, then sold online. Items include duffel bags, small zipper bags, shoulder bags and tote bags. They are available for purchase in line at present.
Southwest Airlines also donates leather to other nonprofits across the country, including one in Texas that helps disadvantaged groups gain skills in making leather accessories. As part of the Repurpose with Purpose program, Southwest also donates old airplane parts for educational purposes and recycles billboard materials into bags. Overall, the airline is giving new life to old life jackets by giving them to Ugandan fishermen.
The mission of Unwavering is to provide women with a path to follow during their recovery. The non-profit organization provides women with development and professional skills that they can keep throughout their lives. The women who work for Unshattered spend about 10% of their week taking refresher courses.
Each bag made at Unshattered features gold thread paying homage to the Japanese art form of Kintsugi. Kintsugi is the practice of repairing cracked pottery with gold, highlighting the cracks instead of masking them. Each bag is unique and has a different story behind it. Shopping with Unshattered helps the organization continue to provide essential life skills to recovering women, significantly reducing their risk of relapse.
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