Facebook Facilitates Philanthropy: New Columbus Clothing Business Uses Social Media to Raise Money for Local Nonprofits
Guy wearing Columbus Pride T-shirt

The COVID-19 pandemic was devastating to so many people and small businesses. When Short North resident, Susie Wroble, lost her job in the fashion industry due to the mass layoffs, she noticed two things: a vacuum in the market for Short North apparel, and a desperate need of help for the small businesses in the area.

“We need to protect these businesses at all cost” Wroble pleaded when remembering that a majority of the businesses in Short North are small and/or family owned. In January when she attended a fundraiser for the Short North Alliance, which supports local small businesses, wearing a sweatshirt of her own design, she not only received compliments, but also inquiries of where one might buy one.

Wroble began making them for friends and family, but once a friend posted about them on her Facebook group, the demand took off. With hundreds of followers on Facebook and Instagram, High Street Collective now fills orders all over the Columbus area and beyond. Starting a business in the middle of the pandemic was difficult enough, but Wroble states that this all would not have been possible without the ability to advertise her product and mission in such a prolific, yet free, way.

What makes this woman-owned business unique, though, in that 10 percent of all proceeds go to local nonprofit organizations. Short North Alliance and I Support the Girls (ISTG) works to provide essential items for impoverished and homeless women. They are the two largest recipients of High Street Collective’s generosity, but Wroble is also using her business to continue the community legacy of Columbus being an inclusive city that “receives all people.”

With June being Pride Month, Wroble is excited to participate in her first Pride month as a business owner. She hopes that she can work to give a portion of profits in June to Stonewall Columbus to help them carry out their work for the LGBTQ community in the area.