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What a perfect partnership! Lorraine Keane and Maïa Dunphy team up for Oxfam Bridal

16 June 2021

Want to find a beautiful wedding dress that doesn’t cost the earth? Then book yourself an appointment at Oxfam’s Bridal rooms in Dublin and Belfast.

At Oxfam Bridal, you’ll find wedding dresses for all tastes, whether you prefer vintage, designer or pre-loved. Many of the dresses have never been worn but are donated by bridal boutiques or designers, preventing them from going to landfill. So, if shopping on a budget, you could find your dream dress at a fraction of the cost.

You’ll also find some beautiful pre-loved dresses in the mix, like Maïa Dunphy’s stunning Jenny Packham dress, which she generously donated to Oxfam last year, or Lorraine Keane's beautiful lace detailed dress by Spanish designer Jesus Peiro, which she bought in San Sebastián.

And yesterday the pair donned their dresses once more time to encourage brides-to-be to book an appointment at Oxfam Bridal.

Lorraine Keane and Maïa Dunphy donated their wedding dresses to Oxfam

Lorraine, broadcaster and founder of Fashion Relief with Oxfam Ireland, said: “Your wedding day is a time to celebrate love, happiness and a future together. For many couples, incorporating some sustainable elements or charitable giving into their special day is becoming more popular. It's a great way to have a positive impact on the future of others while you celebrate your love and commitment to that special someone in your life.

“You also don’t have to spend a fortune to look a million dollars. By booking an appointment with Oxfam Bridal today, you can browse and try on a selection of beautiful brand new and pre-loved wedding dresses – including my own, which I just donated to Oxfam! From vintage to the occasional designer gown, Oxfam’s dedicated Bridal Rooms stock all styles and sizes – a selection of which are currently on display at the Frascati Centre in Blackrock – as well a range of bridal accessories and bridesmaids' dresses. And, the extra bonus is, by supporting Oxfam, your big day creates a brighter future for people living with the injustice of poverty.”

Broadcaster and writer Maïa, who recently donated her wedding dress, said: "After wearing my dress during lockdown, to raise a smile and funds for a charity close to my heart, I realised there's no point in keeping my gorgeous Jenny Packham wedding dress locked away in a bag forever. I'm never going to wear it again and feared one day I'll take it down for a peek to find a moth hole in it!

After seeing a call out from Lorraine for donations I decided to donate it, hoping that someone else will get as much joy as I did out of wearing something so special. I would encourage other people out there to consider the same. You can give your wedding dress a second life – and contribute to another Bride’s special day – while also helping vulnerable communities the world over by donating your wedding dress to Oxfam's Bridal Rooms.
Photos: Brian McEvoy

Oxfam Bridal are located on George’s Street, Dublin, and at Belfast’s CastleCourt Shopping Centre. Over the coming weeks, you can also check out a selection of Oxfam's wedding dresses at the Frascati Shopping centre in Blackrock, where you’ll find fabulous outfits for amazing prices at Lorraine's Fashion Relief pop-up shop.

Book your appointment for Oxfam Bridal at George’s Street or CastleCourt today!

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Broadcasters Lorraine Keane and Maïa Dunphy partner up for Oxfam Bridal

  • Something pre-loved, something new, something for all brides-to-be at Oxfam's Bridal Rooms
  • Oxfam call on Brides to donate their wedding dresses – for people and planet 

16 June 2021

Today, Broadcasters Lorraine Keane and Maïa Dunphy donned their wedding dresses one more time to encourage brides-to-be to book an appointment at Oxfam's Bridal Rooms in Dublin and Belfast.

If you want to find a beautiful dress that doesn’t cost the earth (literally), you can shop with piece of mind at Oxfam Bridal where you will find wedding dresses for all tastes – vintage, designer or pre-loved! Many of the dresses you'll find are donated by bridal boutiques or designers, saving them from landfills, and have never even had their special day. So, if shopping on a budget, you could find your dream dress at a fraction of what it would normally cost.

In the mix, you will also find some beautiful pre-loved dresses, like Maia Dunphy’s stunning Jenny Packham dress – which she generously donated to Oxfam last year. Or Lorraine Keane's beautiful lace detailed dress by Spanish designer Jesus Peiro, which she bought in San Sebastián.

Lorraine Keane, Broadcaster and founder of Fashion Relief with Oxfam Ireland, said: “Your wedding day is a time to celebrate love, happiness and a future together. For many couples, incorporating some sustainable elements or charitable giving into their special day is becoming more popular. It's a great way to have a positive impact on the future of others while you celebrate your love and commitment to that special someone in your life.

“You also don’t have to spend a fortune to look a million dollars. By booking an appointment with Oxfam Bridal today you can browse and try on a selection of beautiful brand new and pre-loved wedding dresses - including my own, which I just donated to Oxfam! From vintage to the occasional designer gown, Oxfam’s dedicated Bridal Rooms in Dublin and Belfast stock all styles and sizes - a selection of which are currently on display at the Frascati Centre in Blackrock - as well a range of bridal accessories and bridesmaids' dresses. And, the extra bonus is, by supporting Oxfam, your big day creates a brighter future for people living with the injustice of poverty.”

Broadcaster and writer Maia Dunphy, who recently donated her wedding dress said: "After wearing my dress during lockdown, to raise a smile and funds for a charity close to my heart, I realised there's no point in keeping my gorgeous Jenny Packham wedding dress locked away in a bag forever. I'm never going to wear it again and feared one day I'll take it down for a peek to find a moth hole in it!

"After seeing a call out from Lorraine for donations I decided to donate it, hoping that someone else will get as much joy as I did out of wearing something so special. I would encourage other people out there to consider the same. You can give your wedding dress a second life – and contribute to another Bride’s special day - while also helping vulnerable communities the world over by donating your wedding dress to Oxfam's Bridal Rooms. ”

By choosing Oxfam, know that the wedding dress you buy will make a difference to the environment and help save lives by raising funds for Oxfam’s work across the world - whether it's reaching the most vulnerable when disaster strikes or supporting people to lift themselves out of poverty by building sustainable livelihoods.

So pay less for the dress and shop sustainably at Oxfam Bridal this year - located on George’s Street in Dublin City Centre and in Castle Court Shooping Centre, Belfast. Over the coming weeks people can see a selection of Oxfam's wedding dresses at the Frascati Shopping centre in Blackrock - where they can also pick up amazing outfits for amazing prices at Lorraine's Fashion Relief Pop-up shop.

Book your appointment with for Oxfam's Bridal Rooms today!

Oxfam Bridal Room in Dublin

Oxfam George’s Street - book your appointment online now, or contact the shop today: +353 1 478 0777 | georgesstreet@oxfam.org


Oxfam Bridal Room in Belfast

Oxfam in Castel Court Shopping Centre - contact the shop to book your appointment today: +44 28 90 231157 | castlecourt@oxfam.org

END

Contact

Caroline Reid | Communications Manager | caroline.reid@oxfam.org | 087 912 3165

Notes

Images are available for use. Contact Caroline for access.

Dress descriptions:

Lorraine is wearing her own wedding dress by Spanish designer Jesus Peiro. The colour is antique ivory. The top of the dress is Spanish lace with a French sleeve length, a scallop edge and covered buttons. The skirt is silk with a Spanish lace underskirt finished with a scallop edge. It has an Audrey Hepburn neckline and covered buttons down the back.

Maia is wearing her own wedding dress by fashion designer Jenny Packham. It is an oyster a-line 'Carmen' dress made from the most beautiful silk . The bodice features amazing beadwork, on both the striking v-cut neckline at the front of the dress with embellishment in crystal, bugle bead and sequins, and at the back on the cross over straps giving it an elegant, Art Deco feel. The dress falls beautifully to the floor with a slight train at the back. 

  • Oxfam can only accept wedding dress donations at their Bridal Rooms:
  • 90% of Oxfam's bridal dresses are brand new and have been gifted to Oxfam by designers and bridal boutiques
  • Oxfam is a global movement of people who won’t live with the injustice of poverty. Together they save lives and rebuild communities when disaster strikes. They help people build better lives for themselves. They speak out on the big issues that keep people poor, like inequality and discrimination against women. And they won’t stop until every person on the planet can live without poverty. Oxfam Ireland is one of 21 Oxfams working in over 90 countries worldwide.  
  • Broadcaster Lorraine Keane founded Fashion Relief in 2018 with Oxfam Ireland. Fashion Relief is a fundraiser extraordinaire that offers people the unique opportunity to bag a bargain from the wardrobe of their style icon or beloved brand, boutique or designer, more recently pivoting to an online interactive shopping channel where people can view and shop from the comfort of their home. Their latest show aired on Friday so there are some amazing items available to buy on – www.fashionrelief.ie. In addition, Fashion Relief has a pop-up shop at the Frascati Shopping Centre in Blackrock where people can also view a selection of wedding dresses from Oxfam's Bridal Rooms.
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As monsoon season looms, Oxfam staff in Cox’s Bazar must prepare for the worst

Monsoon season in Kutupalong-Balukhali refugee camp, Cox’s Bazar. Rohingya women make their way home in the monsoon rains. Photo: Maruf Hasan/Oxfam

Last year’s monsoon season in Bangladesh resulted in catastrophic floods which left one quarter of the country underwater. Almost 1.3 million homes were damaged, hundreds of thousands of people were displaced and hundreds more died.

In the Rohingya camps of Cox’s Bazar, which are home to nearly one million people, more than 100,000 people were affected by the floods. Dozens were injured and 14 people died.

Damage following heavy rains at Rohingya refugee camp in Cox's Bazar. Photo: Mutasim Billah/Oxfam

Heavy monsoon rains can cause landslides and floods, resulting in latrines overflowing with filthy water. As this dirty water flows through the camps, it contaminates everything in its path – including sources of clean water. The result? The spread of deadly diseases such as cholera and typhoid.

The threat of this year’s monsoon season combined with Covid-19 means that Oxfam staff have to be more prepared than ever. But given the crisis upon crisis that has befallen families living in Cox’s Bazar over the past year alone, they will have to plan for the unexpected.

Destruction in the Rohingya refugee camps following a devastating fire in March, which left thousands displaced and hundreds injured. It also destroyed homes and critical infrastructure. Photo: Mutasim Billah/Oxfam

Crisis upon crisis

After all, less than three months ago, a huge fire engulfed four of the refugee camps, separating children from their parents. The fire ripped through the camps at an unimaginable rate, turning 48,300 people’s homes to molten ash and soot.

Food, toilets and water stations were destroyed in the blaze – the same water stations that could help families protect themselves from Covid-19.

“At my age I hardly can go down to collect water. This is Allah’s blessing that Oxfam is giving us water. Now we have drinking water. Life is tough in the camp and now this virus is causing fear among all of us”. Photo: Fabeha Monir/Oxfam

Oxfam's response on the ground

As this summer’s monsoon season looms, our staff will be ready to provide hygiene kits to keep disease at bay. Each kit contains soap, a bucket with a secure lid to keep water clean, detergent, jugs for washing when there are no taps, and sanitary products for girls and women. These simple items are a matter of life and death for families in Cox’s Bazar.  

Our staff will also be preparing to build new water stations and toilets to keep countless children and their families safe from infection.

Families living in Cox’s Bazar have already survived three monsoons. With your support, we can and we will protect them from the elements once more.

From Bangladesh to Vietnam, the global south has the capacity to produce Covid-19 vaccines

10 June 2021

“There’s no point in giving somebody a recipe if they don’t have the kitchen or the cooking skills or the ingredients.”

These were the words of Tánaiste Leo Varadkar last month as he claimed that very few countries in the global south had the infrastructural know-how or materials to make Covid-19 vaccines.

This is simply not true.

Companies in Bangladesh and Pakistan are among a group of firms that have unsuccessfully tried to obtain the rights to increase production of Covid-19 vaccines. In fact, Knowledge Ecology International has identified at least 144 manufacturing facilities in 35 countries that could potentially be used to manufacture these vaccines – if we had an open system with distributed manufacturing and technology transfer, and intellectual property (IP) was waived.

Furthermore, there are already manufacturers making safe and effective Covid-19 vaccines and medicines in Brazil, India and South Africa.

Photo: Nataliya Vaitkevich

The EU, among others, have been stalling negotiations on the trade-related intellectual property rights (TRIPS) waiver at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) since October 2020, when a proposal was first put forward by South Africa and India.

While the EU continues to oppose the TRIPS waiver at the WTO, today the European Parliament supported an amendment calling for Europe to support the temporary suspension of intellectual property rules for Covid-19 vaccines, tests, and treatments.

Waiving IP is not the only step, but it is essential. Producing a vaccine is a complex process and requires access to IP, but also direct transfer of technology, knowledge, and – in some cases – materials.

More than a year ago, the World Health Organisation created the Covid-19 Technology Access Pool, or C-TAP, and invited vaccine producers to collaborate to meet the enormous global need for Covid vaccines, an approach recently supported by the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Foreign Affairs. So far, however, vaccine-makers have refused to engage with C-TAP.

Witnessing this reluctance originally prompted South Africa and India to propose the TRIPS waiver, which is now supported by over 100 countries. They are seeking more forceful legal measures to gain access to IP related to life-saving technologies. After all, the global pandemic is far from over.

Almost 100,000 people are dying of this virus every week in countries without sufficient access to the vaccine. Just 0.2 percent of the vaccines distributed so far have gone to low-income countries.

To win the race against Covid-19 and its new variants, the whole world needs to be vaccinated.

That is why we, along with a number of other organisations, have proposed that a relevant Oireachtas committee undertake an urgent detailed review of Ireland’s position on the TRIPS waiver.

As Ireland and the EU begins to see the benefits of mass vaccination, we cannot stand in the way of the world’s poorest being given the same access to life-saving medicine.

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