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A genius way to repurpose old, unwanted furs for a great cause.

'There are all these people who have inherited fur but don’t want fur and don’t know what to do with the fur.'

A genius way to repurpose old, unwanted furs for a great cause.

Fur in fashion gets a bad rap for a good reason.

While fur is a rightfully taboo fashion choice for many people, recent reports show it's unfortunately making a comeback on runways again.

So what can we do to curtail this cruel trend, aside from not buying furs and encouraging others to do the same?


What about all those old, unwanted furs people have inherited from previous generations? What should become of those?

What if we could use old furs to save baby animals?

Born Free USA, an animal advocacy nonprofit, is doing just that.

Wild bunnies. Photo by Kim Rutledge, Wildlife Rescue Center, Missouri, via Born Free USA.

Born Free has partnered up with over 16 wildlife rehabilitation centers nationwide to send them furs that have been donated by people from all over the world.

The furs are used to help rehabilitate baby animals who've been orphaned or injured.

Opossum sibling. Photo by Fund for the Animals via Born Free USA.

"There’s nothing that any of us can do to undo the cruelty that created those furs in the past," said Adam Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA. "But what we can do is try and have animals benefit from what is already out there. Give the furs a useful home."

River otter kits. Photo by Blue Ridge Wildlife Center via Born Free USA.

Roberts got the idea during an ivory crush he attended in Colorado. Ivory crushes are held to destroy a large amount of ivory in order to effectively remove it from market circulation and broadcast the message that ivory shouldn't be worn or used by anyone other than elephants.

"I started to think about other scenarios in which there are wildlife products we want to remove from the marketplace as a signal that there should be no commercial trade in those animals or their parts," Roberts said.

He did some research and found wildlife rehabilitation centers often collect blankets for wayward animals. He thought old furs might be similarly useful, and just like that, the Fur for the Animals was born.

Fur donations at Blue Ridge Wildlife Center. Photo by Chris Yurek via Born Free USA.

Born Free began calling for fur donations in 2014. Today, they've collected over 800 furs — worth an estimated $1.5 million.

They collect over a four-month period from September through December, which also happens to be the time when baby animals need the most help warming up.

While the animals themselves can't say what a difference the fur means to them, the photos below speak pretty loudly.

Just look at how much Reggie the Bobcat loves his fur blanket:

GIF via Born Free USA/YouTube.

And this baby skunk so cozy in his fox fur:

Photo by Fund for Animals via Born Free USA.

Or this bear cub doing yoga on his new fur mat:

Photo by Fund for Animals via Born Free USA.

And this injured baby squirrel nestling in fur while having a snack:

Photo by Nicholas Alexiy Moran, Urban Utopia Wildlife Rehabilitation in New York via Born Free USA.

Whether it's because it reminds them of their mothers or simply that it acts as a warm, safe haven, the wildlife centers report that the furs really do seem to aid these animals in their recovery.

One fur coat can go a long way, too. Case in point, these 28 coyote cubs who found comfort in one fox coat.

Not all 28 coyote cubs pictured because they can't all fit on the fur at the same time, but you get the idea. Photo by Fund for Animals via Born Free USA.

What's most encouraging to Roberts and the rest of Born Free USA are the letters they've received from donors who finally feel like their fur coats will serve some purpose.

As Roberts said, "There are all these people who have inherited fur but don’t want fur and don’t know what to do with the fur."

Think about it. You have this fur from a past relative that has never felt right to keep, but it never felt right to throw it away either, so it's been sitting in your closet for years, just taking up space. Born Free USA is your chance to get rid of the fur in a way that both honors its former owner, the animal that gave its life, and brings the fur back to the wild.

Like this person who donated their mother's fur coat:

Image via Born Free USA.

And this person who donated their grandmother's fur coat:

Image via Born Free USA.

Roberts himself donated his grandmother's old furs.

She was of the generation that had come through the Depression, he explained, and bought things like steaks and fur coats as a way of proving they had made it out.

"She was a big advocate for me. But she was also someone of a different generation," said Roberts. "I think she would've been very proud to know some good use came out of the furs she had, because even though she had them, she also appreciated the cause of animal protection and conservation."

Bobcat kitten on a bed of fur. Photo by Fund for Animals via Born Free USA.

Roberts hopes Fur for the Animals will not only give old furs a second life comforting injured animals, but that it will raise awareness of the abhorrent nature of the fur industry and help put a stop to it once and for all.

He is well aware of the cruelty of which the fur trade is capable. Showing what a positive effect old furs can have on animals may be the most effective way to get the world's attention. Once people have been engaged by the sweet photos, he hopes the "stop the fur industry" message will fall on more attentive ears.

Thousands of animals died to make these furs, and that's a sad reality we can't go back and rectify. We can't undo what's been done, but we can change what we do with the millions of unwanted furs that still exist — and we can make sure we're moving forward positively. Even if this doesn't bring the fur industry to a screeching halt, bringing these furs back to wildlife is perhaps the only fitting way to end their story — with a new beginning.

Photo courtesy of Macy's
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Macy's and Girls Inc. believe that all girls deserve to be safe, supported, and valued. However, racial disparities continue to exist for young people when it comes to education levels, employment, and opportunities for growth. Add to that the gender divide, and it's clear to see why it's important for girls of color to have access to mentors who can equip them with the tools needed to navigate gender, economic, and social barriers.

Anissa Rivera is one of those mentors. Rivera is a recent Program Manager at the Long Island affiliate of Girls Inc., a nonprofit focusing on the holistic development of girls ages 5-18. The goal of the organization is to provide a safe space for girls to develop long-lasting mentoring relationships and build the skills, knowledge, and attitudes to thrive now and as adults.

Rivera spent years of her career working within the themes of self and community empowerment with young people — encouraging them to tap into their full potential. Her passion for youth development and female empowerment eventually led her to Girls Inc., where she served as an agent of positive change helping to inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold.

Photo courtesy of Macy's

Inspiring young women from all backgrounds is why Macy's has continued to partner with Girls Inc. for the second year in a row. The partnership will support mentoring programming that offers girls career readiness, college preparation, financial literacy, and more. Last year, Macy's raised over $1.3M for Girls Inc. in support of this program along with their Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programming for more than 26,000 girls. Studies show that girls who participated are more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, score higher on standardized math tests, and be more equipped for college and campus life.

Thanks to mentors like Rivera, girls across the country have the tools they need to excel in school and the confidence to change the world. With your help, we can give even more girls the opportunity to rise up. Throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases or donate online to support Girls Inc. at Macys.com/MacysGives.

Who runs the world? Girls!

via Pixabay

Over the past six years, it feels like race relations have been on the decline in the U.S. We've lived through Donald Trump's appeals to America's racist underbelly. The nation has endured countless murders of unarmed Black people by police. We've also been bombarded with viral videos of people calling the police on people of color for simply going about their daily lives.

Earlier this year there was a series of incidents in which Asian-Americans were the targets of racist attacks inspired by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Photo courtesy of Macy's
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Did you know that girls who are encouraged to discover and develop their strengths tend to be more likely to achieve their goals? It's true. The question, however, is how to encourage girls to develop self-confidence and grow up healthy, educated, and independent.

The answer lies in Girls Inc., a national nonprofit serving girls ages 5-18 in more than 350 cities across North America. Since first forming in 1864 to serve girls and young women who were experiencing upheaval in the aftermath of the Civil War, they've been on a mission to inspire girls to kick butt and step into leadership roles — today and in the future.

This is why Macy's has committed to partnering with Girls Inc. and making it easy to support their mission. In a national campaign running throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases to the nearest dollar or donate online to support Girls Inc. and empower girls throughout the country.


Kaylin St. Victor, a senior at Brentwood High School in New York, is one of those girls. She became involved in the Long Island affiliate of Girls Inc. when she was in 9th grade, quickly becoming a role model for her peers.

Photo courtesy of Macy's

Within her first year in the organization, she bravely took on speaking opportunities and participated in several summer programs focused on advocacy, leadership, and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). "The women that I met each have a story that inspires me to become a better person than I was yesterday," said St. Victor. She credits her time at Girls Inc. with making her stronger and more comfortable in her own skin — confidence that directly translates to high achievement in education and the workforce.

In 2020, Macy's helped raise $1.3 million in support of their STEM and college and career readiness programming for more than 26,000 girls. In fact, according to a recent study, Girls Inc. girls are significantly more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, to be interested in STEM careers, and to perform better on standardized math tests.

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