Read the story here. Advertise at Before It's News here.
Profile image
By Human Wrongs Watch
Contributor profile | More stories
Story Views
Last Hour:
Last 24 Hours:

Moving Fast to Beat Fast Fashion

% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.

2 December 2019 (UN Environment)*When Omar Itani couldn’t find anywhere to dispose his second-hand clothes, he set a chain of events in motion that he could never have imagined.

Making the decision not to contribute to Lebanon’s landfill, he instead decided to set up his own solution. The social enterprise FabricAID was born.

Omar Itani was awarded with the title of Young Champion of the Earth for West Asia in September 2019 for his battle to reduce textile waste while also making a big social impact.

FabricAID, the enterprise he founded, reuses and recycles unwanted clothes. Clothes are graded, sorted into over 46 categories, cleaned in the warehouse and redistributed to disadvantaged communities at US$0.3 – US$2 per item. FabricAID has sold more than 60,000 items of clothing to more than 7,000 beneficiaries.

“The second-hand apparel market is projected to double over the next five years, overtaking the retail fast fashion market,” said Michael Stanley-Jones, co-Secretary of the UN Alliance for Sustainable Fashion at the UN Environment Programme (UNEP).

“Millennials (25–37) and Gen Z (18–24) are adopting second-hand two-and-a-half times faster than other age groups, finding bargains while lowering the carbon, chemical and water resource footprint of the clothing we wear. Recycling clothing is good for the planet.”

We asked Omar to share his experiences about becoming a Young Champion.


What is the most valuable thing you have gained from the award?

I really felt we received a lot exposure and raised awareness on textile waste. Our award video even got 100,000 views on social media! At the same time, I feel I was able to raise awareness of the waste situation in Lebanon. I spoke at several summits and always mentioned Lebanon and Beirut to raise awareness about the challenges in my region.

On a personal level, I wake up every day feeling like a champion! Whenever I’m with friends in a bar, they say: “The champion is here!” Unfortunately, they never mean it seriously…

Have you established any collaborations so far?

It’s still a little early, buy there are two interesting potential collaborations that I would like to mention.

During the award ceremony, I connected with Patagonia’s CEO, Rose Marcario, who won the Champion of the Earth award. We discussed the possibility of FabricAID collecting Patagonia’s unsold stock in Southern Europe. This will allow us to expand our collection process and gain exposure in a new region, which will open many doors in the future. Currently, we are still discussing options.

We have been in touch with Google. Rosemary Koesling, business development and senior strategy expert at Google will be delivering a workshop to the FabricAID team about Google’s 9 Principles of Innovation.

This will be the first in many ways Google will be supporting FabricAID, which will include Google store credits, mentorship, exposure and possible funding opportunities. Rosemary will be also supporting our application for the Global Innovation Fund.


Would you recommend other entrepreneurs to apply?

Yes, I would definitely recommend it. Firstly, if you are an enterprise that works with environment, there is no better partner than the United Nations Environment Programme in terms of exposure and support, but even more in terms of credibility.

You have no idea how many doors have opened through this association. Secondly, meeting the other Champions, Young Champions and Covestro team was extremely inspiring and helpful. Thirdly, Young Champions team staff have been very kind and accommodating, and I have learned so much from them.

What are your plans for next year?

We will open a new shop in first quarter 2020, called Shops 360. The shop will be a second-hand clothing store with a vintage section, feeding the needs of different social classes. The shop will offer something different and unique, design-wise and concept-wise.

We are aiming for an artistic and vintage feel, full of colors, posters, old antique items. We’re planning to have a trading system for which you can pay with other items – introducing a barter system that is not only based on money. Also, we’re going to emphasize using recycled bags, and cutting down on plastic waste.

What is your vision for the future?

We just secured US$1.8 million in funding and aim to use this to expand very rapidly. When I started this business two years ago, I had two employees.

Now I have 100 employees and we are opening a new regular shop every three months. And we aim to do much more. Not because I want FabricAID to become a big company, but because there is a big need, and we are working hard to try and satisfy it.


Stay tuned here to follow the journey of the Young Champions and changemakers. Do you have what it takes to be a Young Champion of the Earth?

Applications open in January. Pressing submit makes you part of our changemaker community – get involved and be part of the conversation on environmental change.

The Young Champions of the Earth Prize, powered by Covestro, is UN Environment Programme’s leading initiative to engage youth in tackling the world’s most pressing environmental challenges. 

*SOURCE: UN Environment. Go to ORIGINAL. 2019 Human Wrongs Watch

Before It’s News® is a community of individuals who report on what’s going on around them, from all around the world.

Anyone can join.
Anyone can contribute.
Anyone can become informed about their world.

"United We Stand" Click Here To Create Your Personal Citizen Journalist Account Today, Be Sure To Invite Your Friends.

Please Help Support BeforeitsNews by trying our Natural Health Products below!

Join our affiliate program and earn extra money by sharing with friends and family or by posting on your social media.

Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at

Get our Free Ebook, "Suppressed Health Secrets"  with  Natural Cures THEY don't want you to know!

APeX - Far superior to colloidal silver! Destroys Viruses, Bacteria, Pathogens with Oxygen plus Silver!

Supreme Fulvic - Nature's most important supplement! Vivid Dreams again!

Ultimate Curcumin - Natural pain relief, reduce inflammation and so much more.

MitoCopper - Bioavailable Copper destroys pathogens and gives you more energy. (See Blood Video)
Oxy Powder - Natural Colon Cleanser!  Cleans out toxic buildup with oxygen! 
Organic Hemp Extract (CBD) - Full Spectrum high CBD (3300mg) hemp extract eases stiff joints, relieves stress and more!
Nascent Iodine - Promotes detoxification, mental focus and thyroid health.
Smart Meter Cover -  Reduces Smart Meter radiation by 96%!  (See Video)

FINAL WARNING!  Diseases are EXPLODING!  Watch this Video about APeX and You'll THROW AWAY Your Colloidal Silver!  APeX destroys Viruses, Bacteria and other Pathogens with the power of Oxygen PLUS Silver!  Nobody else has a product like THIS!   See why the inventor hasn't been sick in 16 years and why you'll never hear about it on the FAKE NEWS!  Get some now and tell your friends about it too so we can reach more people!  

APeX Interview - Superior to Colloidal Silver from Lee Canady on Vimeo.

Learn about APeX Here and Get the 50 Page Report in PDF format.   Call us at 888-809-8385 to order by phone.

Report abuse


Your Comments
Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

Load more ...




Email this story
Email this story

If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.