New social enterprise, Pickni Uniforms, has partnered with Universal Music’s UK Task Force for Meaningful Change – set up in June 2020 in partnership with Universal Music Group’s global Task Force for Meaningful Change to be a driving force for social justice and equity – to launch the Free School Uniform initiative, providing hundreds of secondary school children on free school meals with a free school blazer.
Pickni Uniforms, established in 2020, aims to make school uniform more accessible to low-income families and resolve the issues parents and carers may encounter when trying to source affordable uniform for their children.
One in five parents have suffered financial hardship as a result of purchasing their child’s school uniform. The Free School Uniform (FSU) initiative will be available to families who claim free school meals within the borough of Croydon, which, according to government statistics, makes up 22 per cent of students in the borough.
The enterprise, co-founded by friends Jordan Edwards-Wilks, known musically as Jords, and Jamahl Rowl, emerged when they heard about the five-hour long queues to purchase school uniform in their hometown of Croydon.
Jords is a recording artist, signed to EMI Records, and a trustee for Key Changes, an award-winning charity for musicians experiencing mental health problems. Jamahl is a digital marketing manager who has created successful campaigns for a variety of retail brands and charities, including Next, Hugo Boss, Rimmel London and Action Aid.
Speaking on his passion for this project, Jords says, “As the well-known saying goes ‘it takes a village to raise a child’, and we should be working to ease the pressure that parents and carers feel. It’s my honour to be able to help out in any way possible”.
Afryea Henry-Fontaine, Fay Hoyte and Jade Richardson, co-chairs of the UK Task Force for Meaningful Change, say, “We know how passionate Jords is about making real change. The Task Force has been inspired by his drive and sense of duty, so it was important for us to support him and this indisputably essential project.
Pickni Uniforms has also partnered with the QPR Community Trust to introduce a school uniform recycling scheme, where parents and carers are encouraged to donate old uniform to be recycled or rehomed, in an effort to reduce 350,000 tonnes of landfill waste from the textile industry per year.
The FSU initiative is set to launch in September 2021 and can be found on the Pickni Uniforms website. For further information and press enquiries please contact Jordan and Jamahl at firstname.lastname@example.org.