With the COVID-19 pandemic affecting shipments to Canada’s northern communities, superstar Ryan Reynolds has teamed up with one of the country’s most well-known parka brands to provide warm clothing to hundreds of students in Nunavut this winter.
On Tuesday, Canada Goose announced it would donate its famed parkas along with Baffin footwear to outfit more than 300 students who are attending Inuujaq School in Arctic Bay, Nunavut.
In a statement, Reynolds said it had come to his attention that students at the school, which is located above the Arctic Circle on Baffin Island, didn’t have appropriate winter clothing.
“It highlights a larger issue of basic needs going unmet in Canada’s northern communities,” he said. “I reached out to Canada Goose to match me in providing these students with essential winter gear. They not only said yes in under 30 seconds, but went so far above and beyond matching me. I’m deeply inspired and grateful.”
The luxury parka company said the pandemic has significantly impacted the frequency of shipments of essential goods to northern communities.
“Arctic Bay, being one of the most northern hamlets in Nunavut, has seen its access to everyday items greatly reduced, making the need for winter wear more important than ever before,” the brand’s statement said.
Gregg Durrant, the principal of Inuujaq School, said access to almost everything is already limited because of their northern location, but the impact of COVID-19 has accentuated the problem.
“We are so appreciative of the warmth Ryan and Canada Goose have shown our students, their gift will be remembered for years to come,” he said.
In addition to the warm gear for the students at that particular school, Canada Goose said it would expand its Resource Centre Program, which donates fabric and materials to northern communities for making parkas.
The expanded program will now include the donation of thousands of “repurposed parkas” to Arctic communities located across the Inuit Nunangat, which is the Inuit homeland in Canada. The company said the majority of the repurposed parkas have been upcycled through its warranty program.
The Resource Centre Program works in partnership with Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the national representational organization for Inuit in Canada. The expanded program is scheduled to begin in November.
“We were born in the North and our support of its people is unwavering,” Dani Reiss, the president and CEO of Canada Goose, said.
“I’m proud that we, along with Ryan, are able to deliver warmth to the students of Inuujaq School in Arctic Bay. And now, through our expanded Resource Centre Program, we will bring the warmth of Canada Goose to even more communities across the Arctic.”