The Auckland sisters keeping Kiwi kids out of the cold

Child wearing a Double Happy hoodie
Double Happy are supplying hoodies to children in need. Photo credit: Supplied.

As a cold snap hits the country, a pair of Auckland sisters are doing their part to make sure Kiwi kids aren't feeling the winter chill. 

Paulette and Sonya Cotter started Double Happy last year; selling sweatshirts and hoodies emblazoned with designs from local street artists. For every hoodie and sweatshirt purchased, Double Happy provides a warm and cozy one for a child in need.

The Cotter sisters say they were inspired to start Double Happy in 2017 after becoming concerned about New Zealand's child poverty statistics. 

Paulette and Sonya Cotter from Double Happy
Paulette and Sonya Cotter. Photo credit: Supplied

"Around 300,000 New Zealand kids live in poverty and we wanted to do what we could to help," says Paulette.

"So we did some initial research, talking to principals at low-decile primary schools... They told us about the hidden issue of sickness and absenteeism, and that a lack of warm clothing caused health issues and impacted on attendance."

They started small, selling kid's hoodies with a printed graphic to friends and family.

 "We thought we might sell around 50 hoodies," says Paulette. "We ended up gifting over 200."

This year, they've set a lofty goal - to give 1000 hoodies to Kiwi kids in need.

The family set - Supplied by Double Happy
Photo credit: Supplied

Auckland street artist Component says his position as a father inspired him to join the cause, designing striking animal graphics for the front of the sweatshirts alongside fellow artist Ithink.

"As a dad myself, I feel fortunate that I'm in a position to give my kids what they need, but I know some parents aren't in that situation and I felt called to help," he says.

"This project is all about feeling good. Animals can relate to a mood or a feeling, and kids really get that. We wanted to create graphics that are appealing to both parents and kids, because the more we sell, the more we can gift."

More information about Double Happy can be found on their website.         

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