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ALEPH SURF APPAREL

Aleph Surf Apparel

Many of you are hopefully excited about our clothing range while others out there might be asking the question: Why does a non-profit that focus on youth development do a clothing and accessories line?

I wanted to give some breakdown in the through process behind the ALEPH SURF brand:

– As a non-profit funding is always a major concern. Since 2007 we have been mostly dependent on the generosity and partnership of individuals and churches. As economic pressures pinch peoples’ pockets these days, support to non-profits and ministries are the first to go. In 2011 we did some shirts as a fundraiser for our time at Hume Lake and it went good, I mean really good. That income helped to fund Aleph for most of 2012. That event set us on a trajectory to continue the quest of supplementing our financial needs through the sales of goods and services. Hence the ‘Aleph Surf’ Brand of clothing and accessories. This is not an overnight idea but a dream and goal that have been developing over the last 4 years.

– In reality, there are not many surf inspired non-profit community focused surf lines or brands out there. We felt that this is a perfect time and place for Aleph Surf to grow where the motivation is not to make profits for the owners or a few investors, but to implement the profits in fueling the organization to do more life changing work in various communities. We view ourselves not as a business, but as a social enterprise. The sale of these products helps fund our mission.

– Job Creation. As an upcoming brand, our goal is to do as much as possible ‘in-house’ so that the people we know and love will benefit from this process. In layman’s terms this means is that we don’t want to ship our designs to Asia so factory workers in China make our products for super cheap labor rates. We have no connection to these people so why would we outsource our work? We want to pay fair living wages to families who are part of Aleph Surf in Jeffreys Bay, South Africa. It gives people such value and worth to be able to earn their income and in turn take care of themselves and the ones they love. Our goal is to grow in a way that we can provide more training and job opportunity for the community of youth in Jbay.

– DIY. There are many smaller brands popping up these days. Really, all you need is Photoshop and a catalogue, your choice of colors, place your order and wait for the box of garments to arrive at your doorstop. We chose to do it differently. We have chosen to go the longer and more tedious route on this collection. We did it all our self. We designed and cut our own patterns, selected and bought the fabric and thread from credible suppliers in Cape Town and invested in industrial machines needed to do the job accordingly. Most importantly, we paid our ladies far above the industry minimum wages for the region. This collection was labor intensive in the sense that almost 500m of fabric had to be hand cut to create our current collection of shirts. That is 5 x 100m length worth of material!! We are really proud of our final products and we can only grow and move forward with higher quality from here.

– We wanted to showcase products that are made in Africa that people would actually want to wear not because it’s a ‘charity case’, but rather purchase it on the basis that it’s a good shirt that looks and fits great! It is not easy to compete with China and much of India and Asia, but I believe that Africa is on the rise and that we are at the beginning stages in the restoration of confidence in its workmanship.

I sincerely hope that when you finally have your Aleph Surf Product, you will appreciate the item that you are holding in your hands. It is not something that just came into being because of random occurrences or sounded a cool idea. It is an item that holds much meaning and is born from a passion to bring about social change.

We have made it to the best of our abilities and our dream is that it will be part of many a great memories for you.

Who would have thought that teaching others to ride waves would lead to this?

Sincerely and with thanks,

Rehgert van Zyl

Director

Aleph Surf

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Aleph Surf International
501 C(3) Non - Profit Company

South Africa NPO

Aleph Surfing Foundation
South Africa
NPO 071-434

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