UConn student hosts a clothing swap to encourage sustainable shopping practices

University of Connecticut (UCONN) student, Madeline Kizer, loves thrifting! Moreover, this marketing major has a passion for fashion and the environment. When you put all of those interests together, it is not hard to connect the dots, which led to Kizer's epic upcoming event—a clothing swap called Swap-A-Palooza. The clothing swap will take place on Saturday, July 24 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Hubcap Center in Wallingford, CT, and a portion of the proceeds for the event will go to Planet Aid.

The idea for the clothing swap was born out of a need to solve a problem. A Werth Innovators Leadership Development (WILD) ambassador for entrepreneurship at UCONN, Kizer takes part in the leadership program, which encourages students to come up with a business idea or solve a problem. She says, "I've always wanted to be in the fashion industry or have an impact on fashion. As I grew up I realized that fashion is super harmful to the environment, which is something I'm really passionate about."

Kizer is very much aware of the many ways fast fashion wreaks havoc. She explains, "I think it's a really big problem that a lot of people don't understand." She is serious about doing her part to keep clothing out of landfills and not support clothing lines that have deplorable working conditions. She practices sustainable shopping by thrifting, buying from sustainable clothing brands, and swapping clothing with friends.

The goal of the Swap-A-Palooza is something Kizer does not want event-goers to miss. She even states it on the event's website: Our event is to encourage, destigmatize, and normalize secondhand shopping.

In addition, another goal was to give back, and so a portion of the proceeds from the event will go to Planet Aid. In an interview on Keep Me Posted with Planet Aid, she tells why she chose Planet Aid, "I was trying to figure out a good organization to give back to and I liked everything about your organization (Planet Aid). I liked the way you recycle clothing… I liked the way you give back to others in need."

If you would like to know more about Madeline Kizer's sustainability efforts, you can follow her on Instagram @KizerCollection. You can also check out her self-named YouTube channel, where she gives tips about sustainability, recycling, upcycling and more.