Harvesters, in collaboration with South Coast Plaza, presented the season’s most fashionable fall and winter styles during the 28th Annual Harvesters Fashion Show Virtual Presentation on October 7, 2020, which raised over $1.6 million for Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County.
South Coast Plaza produced and curated the runway show featuring highlights from the fall/winter 2020 collections of iconic fashion houses.
The first-ever virtual presentation supported Second Harvest as they meet a critical need by addressing the growing hunger crisis in Orange County during the COVID-19 pandemic.
To date, the annual event has raised more than $11.1 million for Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County, helping to provide at least 33.3 million meals over the past 28 years, to feed hundreds of thousands of hungry people throughout Orange County.
The presentation began with a video introduction from event co-chairs Gail Haft and Nathalie Hymel, as well as Second Harvest CEO Harald Herrmann and Chief Mission Officer Claudia Keller, followed by a one-of-a-kind virtual fashion show filmed at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. The presentation also featured insights from South Coast Plaza stylists, including Nicole Pollard Bayme, Chelsea Wright and Mahjuba Levine.
South Coast Plaza presented a luxury-branded show, featuring exclusive highlights from the fall/winter collections of Chloé, Isabel Marant, Lanvin, Marni, Max Mara, Moncler, Oscar de la Renta, Salvatore Ferragamo and Versace. The event also featured a virtual silent auction with luxury indulgences, exclusive experiences and the latest fashion trends.
“We’re incredibly grateful for the dedicated partnership between Harvesters and South Coast Plaza in championing awareness and fundraising for the important issue of food insecurity that we face in our county, which has skyrocketed during the pandemic,” said Harvesters Chairman Gail Haft. “We are in the midst of a hunger crisis and through the generosity of these globally-recognized luxury retailers and the dedication of our supporters, we were able to adapt and host this annual event virtually, continuing our tradition of fashion meeting service and helping to close the meal gap with healthy and nutritious foods.”
Harvesters is an independent volunteer organization of committed and philanthropic women who raise funds and awareness for Second Harvest’s mission to end hunger in Orange County. Their efforts attract women of all backgrounds who are motivated to make a difference by eliminating hunger for those with the greatest need.
Since getting ahead of anticipated demand early this year with a COVID-19 crisis plan, Second Harvest has so far met the rising need for food caused by the pandemic. But the shift in the volume of food distributed has been stunning.
From March through August 2019, Second Harvest distributed 15,779,501 pounds of food. For comparison, from March through August 2020, the amount more than doubled to 32,303,589 pounds, or a 104 percent increase. The economic aftershocks of the COVID-19 pandemic caused by high unemployment rates, looming evictions and stimulus money running out have all contributed to the hunger crisis in Orange County.
“Newly-vulnerable families who have faced the financial impacts of COVID-19 are struggling to meet the very basic need of food, and Harvesters is humbled to be able to help provide this foundational human right for these families” said Harvesters Co-Chairman Nathalie Hymel. “The funds raised from the event will help Second Harvest scale their efforts to reach our neighbors who need food assistance during this unprecedented time. I am so lucky to work alongside the dedicated women of Harvesters, united to feed our community’s hungry.”
“South Coast Plaza was honored to present its annual fall/winter fashion show as an exclusive virtual experience to support the Harvesters,” said Debra Gunn Downing, spokeswoman for South Coast Plaza. “We’re pleased to be involved in efforts to address hunger in Orange County and thank our participating luxury brand design houses for their flexibility and helping us make the virtual fashion show a success.”
As the premier showcase for European and American luxury and designer fall collections at South Coast Plaza, the Harvesters annual fashion presentation raises awareness about hunger in Orange County. In one of the most affluent areas of the United States, one in six children goes hungry one or more times every month. Hunger is a constant struggle for the working poor who struggle to pay for basic necessities such as food, medicine and housing.
The Annual Fashion Show was made possible by the support of generous sponsors including South Coast Plaza, Corporate Legacy Harvest Sponsor City National Bank, Aston Martin, Fresh, Nolet Spirits, Louis Vuitton, Baccarat, Lanvin and select South Coast Plaza restaurants including Knife Pleat, Hamamori, VACA, Terrace by Mix Mix, Quattro, Water Grill, The Hall and Din Tai Fung. One hundred percent of proceeds from the event go directly to Second Harvest.