KOMP Global Ambassador, Doutzen Kroes, wearing the Elephant Mini Bag, in Kenya
Bergdorf Goodman: Why is the Knot on My Planet initiative important to you?
Doutzen Kroes: Our initiative is important to me because we may be the last generations to see our largest land mammals in the wild of Africa. After I visited them for the first time in Africa I knew I had to do something to help these gentle giants, to fight to secure a future for them. This has been one of the most important involvements I have had in my life as it has given me purpose and a reason to use my voice to make a real difference. I am so proud of what our team has done and honored to have so much support from my friends and colleagues within the fashion industry. Together we have rallied brands and followers to raise $4.2 million in less than two years with 100% of those funds going to the best organizations on the ground to stop the killing of elephants for their Ivory through anti-poaching, anti-trafficking and demand reduction projects.
BG: How did the collaboration between KOMP and LOEWE come to be?
DK: We, at KOMP, always felt LOEWE was such a natural partner because of their endearing elephant bag and we also felt their brand was a natural fit with our vision of brand collaborations. LOEWE supported us in our initial launch September 9, 2016 and we started talks quite soon after.
BG: We know that you visited Kenya for the LOEWE campaign. What is your favorite thing about Africa?
DK: So many facets of Africa are special to me. The diverse landscapes with wild animals dotted upon it to the colors of the land and its people whom are rich in tradition. The one thing that always gets me in Kenya is its vast equatorial sky.
BG: What do you think is the best way for people to get involved with the initiative?
DK: We would obviously love for people to make donations to the ECF, however it is equally important for people to talk about the plight of the elephants- through raising awareness we have the ability to change people’s behavior when it comes to consuming Ivory. In our initial launch we were able to garner 1.5 billion impressions on social media by asking our follows to tie a knot. This kind of awareness building is key because when the demand stops the killing will too.
Up close and personal with the Elephant Bags
BG: What kind of change do you hope to see as a result of the initiative?
DK: We hope to continue to bring awareness to people who may not otherwise know what the elephants are up against. Working with LOEWE gives us the platform to be in front of a larger audience to expose the ivory crisis in order to raise attention and garner supporters. My ultimate hope is to save this species so that my children won’t be the last generation to see African elephants in the wild.
BG: Can you tell us about the most memorable experience you have had with elephants?
DK: My first time seeing them in the wild I was with my children and it was so special to see how they interacted so much like our own little family. Then most recently when I was shooting the LOEWE x KOMP campaign in Africa I had the chance to see Tim one of the few big tuskers left in Africa, one of the oldest elephants alive- seeing him in person was magical.
Elephants in Kenya