Business Spotlight - Jireh Apparel

Mary's Meals Canada is fortunate to have Winnipeg-based apparel business, Jireh Apparel, partner with us.

Perhaps you know of a small business who would also love to partner with us.

Back to all stories | Posted on 23 December 20 in News

Jireh, from Scripture, means, "God Our Provider".  We connected with Luke Moore, Founder, to learn more about him and Jireh Apparel.  With the creation of two t-shirt designs, Luke / Jireh Apparel have committed to support an entire school in Zambia using the proceeds from these two shirts.  Read his inspiring story here and please share.  

Luke, tell me about your background - where did you grow up, go to school, what was your first job?

Born in Saskatoon but moved to Calgary/went to school there at the age of 8.  My first job was actually at McDonalds which turned out to be great in terms of learning work ethic and teamwork. 

What led you to create Jireh Apparel and, in your words, "apparel with a purpose"?

As someone raised in North America, I am very aware of how good we have it even though I too take that for granted.  We didn’t come from a “well off” family, yet we still had more than a lot of the world's population.  I decided to create Jireh as a partnership with God.  I wanted Him to use it as a tool to see those with the least be cared for and nourished how He would.  I figured since everyone needs clothes and we often look for certain brands when we shop, that I would set out to make Jireh a household name at least as far as the Christian circles go so that MANY could be provided for. 

Why did you choose Mary's Meals to support?

I chose Mary’s Meals as I have a long-standing history with Canadian executive director Sheri McConnell.  I saw she had posted about the work Mary’s Meals was doing and how little it cost to feed a child for a whole school year and it was a no brainer.  We’ve agreed to sponsor an entire school in Zambia because we know that given the opportunity, people love the chance to help and would follow through!  

What inspired you to create the shirts supporting the school / children in Zambia?

Our line of “This shirt feeds” was strategically designed to be a talking piece.  I’ve been witness firsthand to someone wearing one of them and others asking them what that’s about and how they can get involved.  That’s the idea behind it.  The wheat is what I think of when I think of providing food for others, so between that design, and the farmer planting seeds in the field, they really open up a chance to talk about the incredible work Mary’s is doing and how others can get involved.  One of our customers made a post after receiving their shirt saying “I can’t start a company that’s creating change for people overseas, but you know what I can do?  Buy a t shirt”.   And that’s the motivation behind the design

As a small business owner, why is it important for you to "give back"?

As a small business owner, it’s not only important for me to “give back”, it’s the only reason I am a small business owner.  Every garment we sell goes first and foremost to feed children as that’s our #1 goal, then to expenses/marketing etc.  I don’t take any money from the sales and have no desire to.  I believe the more people that start giving back even just in small things will create a massive ripple effect in the world.  What we see as insignificant ($.13/day) is a matter of one child actually eating.  So when you break it down that something seemingly so small creates such a big impact, people get it. 

How would you encourage other small business owners to give back?

My message to other small business owners is simple, just start somewhere.  There’s always going to be an excuse of why we shouldn’t or can’t give back, but once you start you’ll begin to see it is more than possible, and the work you’re doing is creating incredible change for the worlds poorest.  Your commitment to give back has gigantic impact that cannot be overstated.  

Thank you, Luke and Jireh Apparel! We are so grateful for your ongoing support - feeding an entire school in Zambia! If your small business would also like to get involved, please get in touch!

There are many different ways you can help by donating your time, money, thoughts and prayers.