Timberland Engages Volunteers and Consumers at Something in the Water Festival

Timberland helped restore a school garden and created a 3500-square foot pop-up park at the festival with 4,000 attendees pledging to be a hero for nature and live a greener life
Jul 24, 2019 10:45 AM ET

As a Timberland intern, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to represent the brand this past April through our partnership with Pharrell Williams’s Something in The Water Festival (SITW) in Virginia Beach, VA. I’ve volunteered at music events before, but I had no idea I was going to experience so much more. 

SITW was the first event of its kind for Virginia Beach. Pharrell once said if he “made it” he’d come back to Virginia one day to do something big.  And he did.  He created a three-day celebration of community, art, sustainability, and of course, music. 

A few days before Timberland’s activation on the festival grounds, we pulled on our boots and helped revitalize the garden at Seatack Elementary School, which Pharrell once attended. A local Navy group and student members of the school’s Breakfast Garden Club also joined the effort. The group of ten passionate 5th grade boys meet every morning before school to eat breakfast, tend to the garden, and support and encourage each other. It was beautiful to meet and inspire them to continue to be heroes for nature in their community. We all worked as a team to plant over 800 vegetables, fruit trees and more. Perhaps my favorite part was surprising the entire school (more than 350- students) at the end of the day with Timberland boots and t-shirts. For some it was their first new pair of footwear. I was proud to contribute to a school that offers a safe place for so many students to cultivate their dreams.

Later in the week, Timberland created a 3500-square foot pop-up park at the festival.  Four-thousand attendees explored our park and pledged to be a hero for nature and live a greener life and use a reusable shopping bag and water bottle, opt out of plastic straws, and/or volunteer in their community. For each pledge, we planted a tree in Haiti through our partnership with the Smallholder Farmers Alliance. I distinctly remember telling one woman that her pledge committed us to plant a tree and her jaw literally dropped. She couldn’t believe a brand like Timberland would do such a thing just do to make things better. I smiled and felt such pride in our brand that genuinely strives to leave a positive footprint in the world. At the end of the event, Timberland donated all of the living greens and trees in the pop-up park to Virginia Beach ViBe District, a cultural hub of the city. 

Before working for Timberland, I knew the brand for its iconic 6-inch yellow boot. I’m now six months into this job, and just signed on for another six months, and I can’t stop talking about the brand’s purpose to anyone I meet. I didn’t go to school for fashion, product development or design, but I did go to school for communications and it has been an honor to be a part of a passionate brand that lives its purpose, to inspire and equip the world to step outside, work together, and make it better.  

My time at Timberland has only reinforced that anyone can make a difference in the world.

Will you join us and be a hero for nature in your community? #natureneedsheroes

About the Author
Hannah Dawber is a PR and Brand Media Intern at Timberland. She aspires to be the mouthpiece for people and/or brands fighting to make a difference in the world.