Rob and Paul Forkan
Brothers Rob and Paul Forkan lost their parents in the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami; through Gandys, their ethical fashion brand, they have been working ever since to improve the lives of orphans around the world.
Gandys was established in 2011, selling responsibly sourced flip-flops. A 10% share of all profits goes to the Gandys Foundation and its Orphans for Orphans programme, which supports orphans and underprivileged children across the world with places to live, education, healthcare and nutrition.
“With our Orphans for Orphans initiative, we have been able to design really cool flip-flops to help children who are less fortunate. We have recently built a children’s home in Sri Lanka and are now looking to build another home at the end of this year.”
For the brothers, the business is a means to a wider end: “We don’t see Gandys as work, it’s our mission to make Gandys a success and build lots of children’s homes all around the world.”
It is incumbent on business, they believe, to pursue more than just profit: “Business should play a bigger role in society because it can have a major impact on people’s lives… we have a huge following on social media which allows us to reach people not only in the UK but anywhere in the world. People all over the world can see all of the exciting things that we get up to. Sharing our story of overcoming adversity inspires a lot of people.”
“Business should play a bigger role in society because it can have a major impact on people’s lives.”