How-to Inspiration

Top 4 Charity Pop-Up Stores to Shop For A Cause

Image via Evening Standard

Pop-Up Stores have many great benefits for brands: a tool to launch an O2O strategy, engage with customers, build brand buzz, test locations, seasons and markets, and target new customer segments. Today, they do not only benefit the company but local communities and society as well. Here are great examples of charity Pop-Up Shops with a cause that you can learn from:

Keds and Refinery29, New York

Image via Refinery29

To celebrate International Women’s Rights Day 2017, Keds and Refinery29 teamed up to host an exclusive Pop-Up event. It kicked off with the Pop-Up shop at the Tictail Market where limited edition merchandise, including posters, t-shirts and tote bags with artwork that was originally created for the Women’s March by a collective of female artists curated by Refinery29 were sold. At the market, Keds is selling limited edition sneakers customized at the event by illustrator Jen Mussari. The proceeds from the shopping for a cause at the market went to She Should Run, an organization championing women who want to run for public office.

Amnesty International, Hong Kong

amnesty international bookstore pop up in hong kong
Image via Creativity-online

In February 2017, Amnesty International highlighted the threats to the Freedom of Expression laws protected by Article 27 in Hong Kong with the opening of a Pop-Up bookstore in the city, selling over 1,000 redacted books that have been censored or blacked out. All the books were on sale for HK$27 to remind of the Article 27.

Benefit, London

Image via Benefit Cosmetics UK Instagram

In March 2017, Benefit, the premium cosmetics brand launched the “Raise your Brow” Pop-Up Store in Covent Garden to raise money for two charities. Celebrities, brands, and influencers donated clothes, accessories, and beauty products to be sold at the event. But all the products donated had to be pink to match Benefit’s colours. Similar charity pop up shops were held in Glasgow, Dublin and Manchester, and an auction also took place on Ebay to maximise the revenues to give to the charities. Benefit has been organizing at least one charity event a year since 2014.

The Street Store, South Africa

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Photo via SF Gate

The Street Store is a Lean Retail venture in Cape Town, South Africa where the target customers are the majority plagued by poverty. Forced to live on the streets; many of these men, women and children find clothing to be a scarce commodity.

The word homeless is sometimes mouthed in disgust. And those are by the people who proclaim pity as hand a dollar towards the cardboard wielding man waiting near the freeway off-ramp. Other synonyms are spoken with more venom, and less concern.

the street store pop-up

As a society we regard this population as just another discarded inanimate object or obstacle during our daily commute. In a world where we champion success at any cost, humanity gets tossed to the wayside.

The Street Store’s mission is to bring confidence and dignity to those who couldn’t normally afford new clothing. Individuals are encouraged to donate gently-used apparel which are hung on makeshift cardboard pop-up shop walls along the sidewalks of Cape Town. Customers are welcome to choose an item, an accessory, or an entire outfit that peaks their interest… free of charge.

Much like a brick and mortar pop-up shop, sales staff are present at The Street Store to suggest flattering items, offer styling advice, and aid in checkout.

With all of the social and political turmoil in South Africa, thousands have been uprooted from their homes and left homeless. The Street Store is a crucial retail concept that bolsters these individuals shaken confidence, while provide unique assistance that doesn’t view them like a lesser member of society.

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Reaching more than a 1,000 people on its first day of operation, The Street Store changes lives. The ease and accessibility of the pop-up shop allows for the ability to be utilized in other locations besides Cape Town.
Brands thrive by making their pop-up shops unique, dynamic, original, and beautiful. By opening a charity pop-up shop where the main focus is for people to thrive, the effect is truly beautiful.

The images of the Pop-Up Store went viral immediately. Amongst the flurry of publicity, it strikes a cord with many on a truly humanitarian level. It highlights something consumers no longer notice: the power of choice.

This Pop-Up Store gave homeless people a choice, just like any other person going into a shop. The freedom of choice is not often easy to come by to someone who is homeless. The Street Store didn’t just clothe the homeless for free, but gave people a genuine ‘retail’ experience. It restored integrity and empowered the less fortunate.

People who donated the clothes could see their act of generosity at The Street Pop-Up Store. The power of interaction facilitated via the Pop-Up Store is a good example of experiential marketing.

TheStreetStore Pop-Up Store

We don’t realize that everyone is equipped with the same struggles, pains, hopes, dreams, emotions, and memories. We may not remember to pay our credit card until the end of our grace period, or when our significant others sister’s dogs birthday is, but we always remember the simple gesture of a well-intentioned act of kindness.

Retail can be regarded as a materialistic venture. Clothing brands to help us look better, cosmetic companies to help us feel better, and home design stores to help us seem better.

But when a retail venture emerges for the sole purpose of making an impact on someone else’s life, the effect dissolves our self-satisfied drives and humanity shines forth.

A Tremendous success

All those Pop-Up Stores attracted a great number of visitors that were happy to take part in a charitable action. Pop-ups for a cause show the brand’s values and beliefs,  this brings a deeper level of engagement with customers, as they can have a better understanding of what the brand stands for.

For Pop-Ups like the one of Amnesty International or Khushiyon Ni Kabat, people want to support a cause that is meaningful to them. For institutions, it is a creative way to raise awareness on a particular subject and raise funds in order to make the world a better place.

Choosing the right space for a charity pop up shop

In order to attract as many people as possible and to have a greater visibility, hosting your Pop-Up in an open area is a great solution. Mall lobbies, Parks, Event Spaces, any of these choices are an excellent location for a Pop-Up with a cause.

Want to create your own Pop-Up Store for a good cause? Have a look at our spaces all over the world and find the perfect Temporary Space to make your ideas happen!

Last updated: December 11, 2020