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GotGinch and Need Knickers to deliver 50,000 pairs of underwear to homeless shelters across Canada— UGM the first stop

Vancouver, BC— On Tuesday, September 24, Union Gospel Mission will be the first stop in a cross-country odyssey by four Calgary-based philanthropists. Brent King is  hitting the road for the fifth year in a row and is now joined by the others who have strengthened his efforts. They will drive over 7,000kms from Vancouver to Halifax in an RV and deliver 40,000 much-needed pairs of ginch (men’s underwear) and 10,000 much-needed pairs of knickers (ladies underwear) to 10 homeless shelters. 

This cross-Canada underwear drive, now known as GotGinch and Need Knickers, has delivered over 190,000 pairs of underwear to date, across Canada.

“While it might sound funny to talk about, underwear is actually a huge need among the community we serve,” says Bruce Curtiss, UGM’s Senior Chaplain. “Being able to offer clean underwear goes a long way in promoting dignity and self-confidence. With the group’s generosity and ingenuity, we will now have enough supplies for about two-thirds of the year."

The cross-Canada underwear drive is the brain-child of Brent, who, in 2008, was inspired by the answer to a question he posed to a homeless shelter: "What do you need?” The response was simply, “men’s underwear.” Brent, an engineer by trade and entrepreneur by passion—got to work. He raised money through friends, family and business colleagues; a supplier for a large quantity of underwear was sourced and an order placed; an RV booked and GotGinch was born.

In 2010, Robb Price, the founded of joined Brent’s efforts. is an organization that matches charities who need stuff, with people and companies who have stuff. They help direct retired assets and design community investment programs for the betterment of the community. now works with 100s of groups across North America.

In their travels, the question Robb and Brent got posed the most was “what about women’s underwear?” Their typical response was, “two guys driving across the country with an RV full of women’s underwear seems a bit creepy.” So they issued a challenge for a woman to build the female version of GotGinch. Gabriela Ostendorfer caught the vision and Need Knickers was born. Now in its second year, Need Knickers is also joined by Trevor Beckman.

The crew will stop at 10 homeless shelters from September 24 to October 3 in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Halifax delivering 4,000 pairs of ginch and 1,000 pairs of knickers to each shelter.

What: GotGinch and NeedKnickers arrive with 5,000 pairs of underwear – Photo/Interview opportunity

When: 10:00am, Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Where: Union Gospel Mission , 601 East Hastings, Vancouver

Why: To solve one problem and to inspire Canadians to take action by finding other solutions. The can start learning how by visiting

To follow GotGinch across the country: 

Union Gospel Mission has been feeding hope and changing the lives of men, women, and children for over 70 years. Through its 7 locations in Metro Vancouver, UGM provides counseling, education, safe housing, and alcohol and drug recovery to those struggling with poverty, homelessness, and addiction. The heart of the mission is to demonstrate God’s transforming love, ease the burden of the most vulnerable, rebuild the lives of the broken, and offer dignity to those who feel cast aside. To find out more, visit

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