In a conversation with a friend about being socially active, University of Nebraska-Omaha sophomore Kamrin Baker – also a former Fresh U writer – recalled how easy it was to hold a sign, march out into the streets and chant for a cause. However, when it came to fighting for yourself, Baker thought about how that can be difficult. “Kam,” Baker’s friend said, “You need to fight for yourself like it’s a protest.” This statement instantly resonated with her. As an avid collector of activist t-shirts, she wished she had that phrase on a shirt. That is when something started brewing.
Introducing Pals Who Protest, an activist t-shirt organization created by three politically and socially active University of Nebraska-Omaha sophomores. “We all love standing up for what we believe in that it only made sense to share that sentiment with the world,” Sydney Rogers-Morrell told Fresh U. So far, the organization has released a Logo Tee, Fight For Yourself Tee, and a March For Our Lives Tee.
“Pals Who Protest is an organization that produces graphic tees that people can wear to showcase what they believe in on a daily basis and while they are out protesting,” co-founder Emily Brandon told Fresh U. “The majority of the profits go to organizations that support whatever cause a shirt is created for, donation percentage depending on how directly a cause impacts us as creators as well,” Brandon explained that her friends' passion towards Pals Who Protest inspires and motivates her to keep doing what she is doing.
The first shirt designs were inspired by the foundation of the company itself, which resulted in the logo tee and fight for yourself tee. Then the team sat down and thought about the issues that were most pressing at the moment, which were gun control and March For Our Lives. “That inspired us to make our next design, and in the future, I think we will probably stick with that formula,” Baker said. “What do we care about? How do we convey that in a classy and impactful way? Who will get the profits? Let's do it.” Some of the organizations that they are passionate about giving back to are March For Our Lives, Planned Parenthood, Black Lives Matter, NAMI and free press.
In regards to the future of Pals Who Protest, the young women are optimistic. “Pals Who Protest is not necessarily unique in its mission, but it's unique in its foundation of 3 tenacious young women who just wanted to turn their normal conversations into conversations that can change the world,” Baker said. “We are not the only dedicated female activists out there, but our friendship is unique to us, and that's what will make our customer service and our products top-notch.”
For any students that are interested, but hesitant, about getting involved, the young women encourage all students to start somewhere. “Remember that success isn’t measured in numbers, either,” Brandon said. “I really think success is measured in how positively something impacts you. So far, Pals Who Protest is really successful to me because I love what we are doing.”
“My biggest goal for the organization is to have things we create directly impact others,” Rogers-Morrell said. “If even one person were to tell us that they felt more comfortable talking about politics, then I would be thrilled.”
“Talk to people. Overcome the fear of talking about your politics, and do your research,” Baker told Fresh U. “There are so many amazing helpers in the world trying to make it a better place, and they are waiting for you to join the fight.”
If you have interest in the mission of Pals Who Protest and want to get involved, contact PalsWhoProtest@gmail.com.
T-shirts are available on www.bonfire.com under the name "Pals Who Protest," along with other appropriate donation information.
YouTube: Pals Who Protest