Student-organised fashion event raises funds for catwalk show – and mental health charity

Date 20.05.2019

Students with ambitions to see their collections hit the catwalk in London were given a helping hand from fellow undergraduates in the form of a hugely successful fundraising evening.

Every June, final year Fashion design students at the University of Northampton vie to represent the institution at Graduate Fashion Week, which showcases the best undergraduate collections in the UK, attracting talent scouts from across the fashion industry.

Scroll down to watch a video of the event

Students decided to raise money to support their involvement in this huge graduate fashion showcase – which is where their peers on the Fashion Marketing course came in.

A group of second year Fashion Marketing undergraduates organised a fashion and wellbeing event, which raised more than £2,100 – shown on the catwalk and the exhibition stand at Graduate Fashion Week.

10 per cent of the funds were donated to mental health charity, Mind.

The event, titled Mind Fashion Soul, which was held at The Platform club in Northampton town centre on Wednesday 24 April, had the dual purpose of being a fun event, while raising awareness of mental health issues.

It included a catwalk show, featuring both students’ work and showcasing Northampton-based high street brands, entertainment from singers and a moving speech from Paul Marshall, from the Northampton branch of Mind.

Watch a video of the event, by Gabriela Podaru, below.

There was also a raffle, a balloon wall, static fashion displays, free drinks on arrival and goodie bags including merchandise from local organisations including Olly B’s Kitchen and Bar, The Happy Post Lady and Anna Health and Beauty.

One of the organisers, Fashion Marketing student Ciaran McGonigle, said: “We want to say a massive thank you to everyone who made the event such a great success, from the models, DJ and make-up artists to the brands which provided clothes and merchandise for event.

“The event was a night to remember and raised awareness and money for Mind, while also giving our Fashion students the opportunity to showcase their incredible work at Graduate Fashion Week in London next month.”

Paul Marshall, from Northampton Mind, said: “It was a fantastic turn out with a real vibrant atmosphere.

“Northampton Mind relies on local donations from the public and companies as well as money from the council and NHS, which isn’t a great deal.

“To run one of our six-week courses on depression, anxiety, anger or well-being for a dozen people costs us £1,000, let alone all the peer support, groups, one-to-one 1 support, counselling and other projects we put on for our service users. So the money we received from the students’ event is very much appreciated.”

The University of Northampton’s Graduate Fashion Week catwalk show takes place on Tuesday 4 June at The Old Truman Brewery, in east London’s Brick Lane.

Find out more about Northampton Mind.