A Kemble teen is hoping his new online branded-clothing store will help raise awareness for mental health and make everyone feel like they belong.
Gabe Rossitter, 16, launched the “Belong” store website (thebelongway.com) on Aug. 19. He’s selling T-shirts, hoodies, and hats branded with the Belong puzzle-piece logo and telling the story of the company’s four brand pillars – inclusivity, hope, health and awareness.
Ten per cent of all sales are being donated to the local Canadian Mental Health Association.
“It is the invisible enemy in a sense,” Rossitter said of mental health issues in society, and especially among his peers. “Whenever I think of any kind of person who is not, maybe fitting in, or you know, we’ve all had past experiences where you’ve seen people sitting in the hallways just alone, who aren’t included, I think of a group of friends as a puzzle.”
That’s where the idea for the Belong brand logo came from, Rossitter’s puzzle metaphor and belief that everyone has a place and people are stronger when they’re working together.