• Hold Up Podcast
  • Follow us on Instagram
    • wmuckian is our other super cool senior editor Hes from
      5 days ago by urban_plains  @wmuckian  is our other super cool senior editor. He’s from St. Charles, Illinois: “I spent 30% of a conversation trying to list cities near my hometown that aren’t Chicago.” Will’s favorite part of  #UrbanPlains  is “driving to the middle of nowhere to talk to people who are excited to hear their stories are gonna be on the internet.”
    • Your favorite podcasts hosts are back for a second Hold
      7 days ago by urban_plains Your favorite podcasts hosts are back for a second Hold Up episode. Listen in this week as hosts  @mitchellkedzior  and  @jessiespangler  talk with T.J. Juskiewicz about  @ragbrai  and his unique experience of small town Iowa. Link in bio  #UrbanPlains 
    • This small town contains the stories of millions Senior editor
      1 week ago by urban_plains This small town contains the stories of millions. Senior editor  @wmuckian  explored this town full of antiques. Read more in our bio!  #UrbanPlains 
    • elisej29 is one of our detailoriented and creative senior editors
      1 week ago by urban_plains  @elisej29  is one of our detail-oriented and creative senior editors. Maple Grove, Minnesota is home for her: “it’s duck duck grey duck, and I will defend that to the ends of the earth.” “I hope readers feel like they get a sense of what the Midwest is really like and learn more about interesting things happening here.”  #UrbanPlains 
    • Underground lies a missile base shelter that could be used
      5 days ago by urban_plains Underground lies a missile base shelter that could be used in cases of extreme emergency. For now, its owners are renting it out on Airbnb. Read more about  @samanthaohlson  and  @elisej29 ’s journey to find out more about disaster resistance. Link in bio.  #UrbanPlains 
    • Staff members samanthaohlson and elisej29 explored this underground missile silo
      5 days ago by urban_plains Staff members  @samanthaohlson  and  @elisej29  explored this underground missile silo and learned more about the importance of being prepared for the worst. Learn more by clicking the link in our bio.  #UrbanPlains 
    • The stories of those who chose to ride the rails
      6 days ago by urban_plains The stories of those who chose to ride the rails are preserved in the  @hobomuseum  in Britt, Iowa. Learn more about the rich history of hobos by watching a video by marketing director  @mitchellkedzior  (link in bio).  #UrbanPlains 
    • The history of the entire Midwest recounted in one tiny
      2 weeks ago by urban_plains The history of the entire Midwest recounted in one tiny Iowan town: Walnut’s antique stores preserve even the lowest points of American history—and it’s all for sale.  #urbanplains  Link in bio  @urban_plains 
    • brettrosengren is our fun art director He calls Logan Iowa
      5 hours ago by urban_plains  @brettrosengren  is our fun art director. He calls Logan, Iowa home: “50% of the vehicles in Logan are riding lawnmowers.” “I’m hoping that people learn that the Midwest has a lot more to offer than just being a handful of flyover states.”  #UrbanPlains 
    • Service dogs are extremely importantowners who pretend their dogs are
      2 weeks ago by urban_plains Service dogs are extremely important—owners who pretend their dogs are service animals pose multiple threats to real service dogs. Read more by reading the link in our bio.  #UrbanPlains 
  • Like us on Facebook
  • Follow us on Twitter

Thinking Big with Made4Mankind

Words by Alicia Pei Wen Kang

Only three simple rules keep this one-year-old fashion brand going: Give. Help. Motivate.

It drives Made4Mankind, an urban streetwear brand founded by husband-and-wife team Aaron Sarmiento and Maria Mendoza.

Born in the Philippines, and later migrating to America, they’ve worked hard to achieve their dreams of owning a business that also serves their community. “That’s where the motivation comes from. It’s not just from our company, but it’s in our household,” Mendoza says. And this determined couple believes they will make it big with its brand.

Made4Mankind promotes the street culture in Des Moines while giving back to the arts community. When people work together for a common good, great things can happen. That was the inspiration behind the logo and it soon became the company’s mission statement.

One of Made4Mankind’s most interesting projects is the creation of a scholarship that enables talented young dancers to take breakdancing lessons with local breakdancer Anthony San (A-San). Proceeds from clothing sales will fund the dance lessons for kids who otherwise could not afford them. “We love to give back because we feel like the community is what makes a person. It takes a community to raise a child. So we want to be able to go ahead and create something that we are giving back to not just a person but the whole entire society and community,” Mendoza says.

Growing up in the Des Moines suburbs, Sarmiento and Mendoza sometimes struggled with money. It prompted them to lead a more charitable life–helping young dreamers fulfill reach their goals while spreading a little joy.

They are keen on teaming up with A-Sanseeing the difference his breakdancing lessons have made in students’ lives — both mentally and physically. A-San’s students are excited to attend his breakdancing lessons because of their positive vibes and life lessons. “It’s basically teamwork and being respectful to your teachers and being respectful to your peers,” Jett Vivanh, one of A-San’s students, says.

The best takeaways? More confidence, determination and passion. And not just about communicating with the people around them but about everything they do.

“Made4Mankind is self explanatory,” A-San says. “It supports all of mankind. They like to help and support local artists. I was one of the local artists that they reached out to and we have been working together ever since.”

A-San is not the only local artist working with Made4Mankind. The company often collaborates with local talents in the Midwest, including DJs like DM Wright and Pri Von Joni, songwriter and lyricist Brett Ferry (Kemyst), and rappers like MarKaus, Gadema and Carlon. “Their success is our success … We all know there is a lot of talent here in Des Moines, especially in the Midwest, so we wanted to be a platform to basically promote them and get their names out there. We collaborate with them so we can help each other out and promote each other, and we don’t compete with each other,” Sarmiento says .

Made4Mankind continues searching to find more local talents in the Midwest to promote the unique art community that this region has to offer. These young individuals have one thing in common–they bring the urban and street art culture to life.

Sarmiento and Mendoza say that they promise to stay true to their motto.  As the company and brand gain more recognition, they won’t forget about their original home– the Philippines. They plan to spread the name of Made4Mankind globally in the following years.

As for advice, the couple keeps it kind and impassioned.

“Do what you love to do; follow your passion,” Sarmiento says, “and also give to those without, help those in need, and motivate those that dream.”


You May Also Like

lily detaeye urban plains

A Sophomore, A Record Deal, A Harmonica

From Saturday morning farmers markets to music festivals and back again, 19-year-old singer-songwriter Lily ...

Hip-Hop: From Ideation to Creation

From streets to studios to bedrooms, hip-hop’s sonic traditions allow its producers today to ...

Movie UPdate: Life

Megan Ellis and Zoe Ekonomou talk about Life, a new science fiction horror film. ...