Winter can be tough, especially for those who are most vulnerable. With the rising cost of living and recent extreme weather events, it’s become even more important to lend a helping hand to those in need. If you’re looking for ways to make a difference, no matter how small, these initiatives are worth exploring.

Jumper for Jumper
The local knitwear stalwart Standard Issue returns for the third year of its warming initiative, providing knits to Kiwi kids this winter. Here’s how it works: for every Standard Issue jumper purchased online or in-store, they donate a woollen children’s jumper through the Middlemore Foundation. Since the launch of this effective one-to-one model in 2020, over 2000 jumpers have been delivered. If you already have your winter knit sorted, you can still contribute by donating $30, which pays for a jumper for a child in need. Crafted with high-quality materials in the label’s Tāmaki Makaurau workroom, these jumpers are designed to last. “Post-Covid, the floods and high cost of living make it really tough for many families right now,” Standard Issue CEO Emma Ensor tells Broadsheet. “Working closely with the Middlemore Foundation, we have learnt how the jumpers can fit into a holistic approach and help lessen the chances of a child being admitted to [hospital] with respiratory problems.”

Kawhe for Koha
This winter, Otis Oat Milk is giving back to the local community one oat milk flattie at a time. As part of its ongoing Kawhe for Koha event series, the homegrown brand teams up with a different cafe each month, donating all proceeds from the first 100 oat coffees sold to a charity chosen by the cafe. The next event is happening at Wanaka cafe Scroggin with support from Wolf Coffee Roasters on Thursday June 29. All proceeds will go to support Mint Charitable Trust, helping people with intellectual disabilities in the Upper Clutha region. @otisoatmilk

Donate to a good night’s sleep
Olympic shot put gold medallist Dame Valerie Adams has joined forces with the Middlemore Foundation to provide pyjamas for 10,000 children in South Auckland as part of the Jammies for June campaign. This helps combat respiratory illnesses that often affect kids living in cold and damp homes during winter. You can support by buying or donating new pyjamas or making an online donation (ranging from $25 to $150) for pyjamas, blankets and heaters.

In addition, the Kindness Collective’s local initiative, The PJ Project, has set out to double its impact by providing 20,000 pyjamas to children nationwide. Founder and chief executive Sarah Page says a simple pair of pyjamas can spark joy. “For some children, owning a pair of warm pyjamas is a first-time experience that brings them a little bit of joy. We have also heard from parents that these pyjamas represent an act of kindness that helps alleviate their worries.” You can contribute by dropping off new pyjamas at designated collection points (like Six Barrel Soda in Wellington for the month of June) or by donating directly through their website.

Dove x Karen Walker pop-up
Find your perfect winter knit and make a difference at the Karen Walker charity pop-up with Dove Hospice. Head to the brand’s Newmarket store this Friday through Sunday to browse a curated selection of preloved hand-knit sweaters from Dove Hospice Shops. With each purchase, you’ll directly support the work of Dove Hospice & Wellness, helping people with life-threatening or terminal illnesses. Prices range from $80 for adults’ sweaters, $35 for kids’ sweaters, and $20–
$65 for blankets and accessories. June 16-18, or while stock lasts. Karen Walker, 6 Balm St, Newmarket, Auckland. @karenwalker

Crushes Clothes Swap
Join Karangahape Road boutique Crushes for its popular clothes swap event this July, where you can bring up to 10 pre-loved fashion items to exchange for exciting new pieces. Refresh your winter wardrobe sustainably and enjoy vintage stalls, food vendors, and DJs on-site, all while supporting Auckland City Mission through the donation of leftover items. Saturday July 22 at the Sunday School Room in Pitt Street Methodist (just behind the Crushes shop), 78 Pitt Street, Auckland.