Donations to 10 global charities champions the power of creativity, uniting fans worldwide with a shared mission of mental health and well-being.

Vans, the original action sports brand and advocate for creative expression, commemorates the second-annual #VansCheckerboardDay held on November 19, with a more than $1 million donation to 10 global charities to champion the power of creative expression.

Following a period of global isolation, this year’s Vans Checkerboard Day rallied Vans Fans around the world to amplify and help grow the mission of the global charity partners whose shared purpose is to use creativity-focused programs to impact mental health and wellbeing. Through a donation from Vans and by empowering fans to help raise more money by purchasing limited-edition product designed by Geoff McFetridge, donating their Vans Family points or by participating in the newly launched text-to-donate function in the U.S., each charity partner will receive over $100,000 USD, directly from Vans or from the Vans Checkerboard Fund at Tides Foundation. The donations will enable charities to expand their services and resources to help the growing number of youth address mental health concerns through creative outlets such as art, music and action sports, including:

Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) will use the funding to redevelop their website which will greatly improve the digital support to the hundreds of thousands of people who come to CALM for help and advice, so that they can reach more people before the point of crisis. And continue to serve those who are at high risk of suicide, no matter what.

The Wave Project below will now be able to expand its Beach School project within Cornwall and provide access to surf therapy for more isolated young people. The Beach School programme enables young people to improve their mental wellbeing whilst reconnecting with their creativity and potential through learning at the beach.

Arte Por La Vida will now be able to expand their work across Mexico and ensure they can provide the necessary resources to a growing number of beneficiaries in need, including materials for workshops, launching new programs, paying teachers and professionals that lead sessions, and ensure that individuals have transportation to get to and from workshops or sessions.

Global fans showed up virtually around the world to participate in a variety of digital brand initiatives focused on uplifting and driving awareness for the power of creative self-expression as a resource for mental health and well-being, including over 2 billion views of the #VansCheckerboardDay TikTok Challenge and ambassador testimonials from Tony Hawk, Yaya Zahir and Catalina Bu sharing a behind-the-scenes look at how their own forms of creative self-expression have helped them this year.

“While it is an understatement to say that 2020 has been incredibly stressful, anxiety-ridden and frustrating, I believe there’s a tremendous opportunity for creativity to play a powerful and meaningful role in how we navigate and overcome challenges caused by global isolation,” says Doug Palladini, Vans Global Brand President. “Vans Checkerboard Day took on a very specific mission this year – to champion the power of creativity as an outlet for mental health. With the global pandemic continuing to impact many aspects of our lives, we set out to reinforce our brand commitment and responsibility to be there for our Vans family by connecting through creativity.”

Since 2013, Vans has donated more than $10 million to creative charities globally, enabling creative expression in communities around the world. Vans believes that creativity is an essential part of being human and that everyone should be able to express themselves through the unique mediums that come from action sports, art, music and street culture. The Vans Checkerboard Fund at Tides Foundation will allow Vans to connect with more organizations around the world that work to enable creativity for our youth. Organizations can visit to learn more.