The It’s Great Out There Coalition was founded by the outdoor industry and is managed and supported by individuals and companies who are already immersed in nature. However, in our quest to bring new people into outdoor participation, we are always exploring different ways in which we can engage with new audiences to fund and deliver Outdoor Activity Days.
We have already helped thousands of citizens to get active in the outdoors through our #itsgreatoutthere grants programme and that will continue. Meanwhile, it’s really encouraging that we are also starting to get approaches from companies and non-profit organisations with other ideas. So we were delighted when outdoor brand Helly Hansen made contact, not only to join the coalition from 2022, but also to propose an initiative that will benefit both the #itsgreatoutthere campaign, and a great UK non-profit project called We Go Outside Too.
To mark the launch of Helly Hansen’s HH-118389225-212 collection (code name ARCHIVE), the brand collaborated with UK designer SAGE NATION in 2021 to reimagine several items from its mainline Autumn/Winter ’21 collection. The collaboration resulted in eight one-off pieces, all combining the design ethos and inspiration of SAGE NATION and HH-118389225. The collection sees Helly Hansen’s leftover AW21 sales samples such as shell jackets and storm hoods redesigned into garments including a poncho, wrap skirt and waist bag. Trousers and shorts have also been reworked with box pleating and the Helly Hansen’s iconic 3-in-1 parka features updated panelling and envelope pocket detailing. The products bear the unique design stamp of SAGE NATION – one based on core values of ‘purpose, perspective and balance’.
In partnership with lifestyle and cultural magazine eye_ c, each of the items was auctioned off through eye_c’s online store in December. The proceeds from the auction will be donated to UK-based organisation We Go Outside Too (WGOT), which aims to provide more access and experiences in the outdoors for underprivileged communities. We will be working with WGOT and Helly Hansen to use those funds and deliver Outdoor Activity Days in the UK next year. The activities will focus on sailing, watersports and water safety, which represent the roots and heritage of Helly Hansen.
This is a really exciting and imaginative project that is getting the #itsgreatoutthere message to new people and will soon directly benefit individuals who have previously had few or no opportunities to get active in the outdoors. It’s also a great example of collaborative working and we’re grateful that Helly Hansen is working with us to roll out the initiative and get WGOT onto the water. We look forward to teaming up with WGOT and colleagues at Helly Hansen to deliver loads of Outdoor Activity Days in 2022, and hope that it’s the start of a partnership that will introduce many more new people to nature.