Clarks And Jamaica
The connection between Clarks and Jamaica goes back a long way. And ever since the original Desert Boot hit the streets of Kingston, our profiles have occupied a special place on the island.
To celebrate this special relationship, we spoke to some of the biggest names in Jamaican culture to find out what Clarks means to them.
Our shoes have been part of island life since the early 20th Century. But they mean something different to everybody you ask.
For Koffee, when she thinks of the word Clarks, she automatically thinks of Jamaican culture. Because growing up, she saw first-hand just what the shoes meant to those around her.
There’s quite simply no other shoe that can come anywhere near Clarks for Raheem Sterling. For Lila Ike, it’s the versatility that makes them so special.
For The No-Maddz, Clarks have been an obsession since childhood. Everyone wears them, they’re in every song. They’re basically a country-wide passion. While for Protoje, there’s no other international brand that has roots in Jamaican culture quite like Clarks.
A lasting legacy
Giving back to the communities in Jamaica that have given us so much is really important. Which is why we’ve set up a community partnership with Maverley Primary and Junior High School in Kingston. Maverley is an important area for Raheem Sterling, one of our key ambassadors, and this partnership was made possible with the support of Al Fingers, author of the ‘Clarks in Jamaica’ book. Check out the video below to find out just what we’re doing there.
We’re also working with Koffee and her Families Rule/MTLT charity - a not-for-profit that strives to empower kids through training, mentorship and scholarships.
For an in-depth look into the relationship between Clarks and their place in Jamaican culture, check out the 'Clarks in Jamaica' book by Al Fingers which documents the arrival of our shoes in the West Indies more than 100 years ago, through to the adoption of the Desert Boot as the rude boy and Rasta shoe of choice in the 1960s, and the filtering of this popularity into reggae and dancehall song lyrics. Available now from One Love Books and all good bookshops.