Ralph Lauren has donated $500,000 to boost the New York fashion industry.

The designer's generous donation will support the Fashion Manufacturing Initiative, which aims to promote local industry by raising funds and creating grants to help existing New York City factories to attract new business.

Ralph said: ''I was born in New York and started my business in the garment district here. FMI serves an important role in supporting our city, our industry and gives designers the access and opportunities needed to help advance their careers while boosting manufacturing in New York. This is something I'm very proud to be a part of.''

Meanwhile, Don Baum, Ralph Lauren's senior vice president of global manufacturing and sourcing, has been appointed to FMI's selection committee where he will work alongside the likes of designer Prabal Gurung, Rag & Bone's Marcus Wainwright, Theory's CEO Andrew Rosen, Bob Savage's Nanette Lepore, and CFDA CEO Steven Kolb.

Kolb told WWD: ''Ralph's leadership gift and commitment to FMI strengthens our efforts to bring innovation and new energy to New York City manufacturing. We hope others in the industry will join us in this important initiative.''