Thursday, August 30, 2012

Charitable Giving - with perks!

Ok, I admit it, sometimes a little "bribe",  or let's just call it a cool bonus is just the motivation I need to make that step and give to a cause I feel passionate about. 

Well just this week two opportunities with different online fundraisers have come up, both for really special projects.  The first, uses Kickstarter and is for an art collaboration. Light Gives Heat in collaboration with Sole Hope, (an organization very close to my heart) and IAMJ3 are working to bring an artist to Uganda to paint some life brightening murals on run down buildings.  The way it works?  You choose a donation level and there are cool, one of a kind - can't buy in a store, perks at each donation level.  If the project isn't fully funded at the end of the fundraising time, you don't get charged and if you do your donation is tax deductible.  Check it all out here, SOON because there is only 1 day left to fully fund this project! 

The second opportunity is through an online fundraiser called Indiegogo.  It is not an all or nothing fundraiser like the above, and is raising money to help complete a documentary on a fair trade company that makes soccer balls - yes fair trade SOCCER BALLS, called Senda Athletics.  There is about a week left on this fundraiser and some great perks at every level of contribution .  Check them out too!

And just think how it will feel when these projects come to fruition to know that you had a part in making them happen!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Project 7

This one is SOOO easy folks!  No online ordering necessary, no big investment required; I'm talking  gum and mints that can be found in the checkout aisle at Walmart & Target.  Project 7 sells products that support 7 different purposes.  The products (in addition to mints & gum) are bottled water, coffee & apparel.  It's as simple as looking on the product you buy to see where your money will be directed. 

I recommend a quick visit to their website which is filled with great information on the products and projects.  Check out what the products look like so you know what you are looking for in the store and you can even type in your zip code and see which stores near you carry the items.

So no excuses!  This purposeful shopping is for everyone.
p.s. The gum tastes great too! 

Friday, August 17, 2012

Non-Profit Coffee

I've talked about Fair Trade Coffee in a previous post. It is pretty easy to find in stores and online in any form.  I decided to take it a step further and give a non-profit coffee company called Three Avacados a shot.  I am a keurig user and awful at brewing my own coffee so I was a little hesitant because they do not sell k-cups.  That problem was easily solved though with a reusable k-cup that allows you to brew coffee in a keurig (that's next week's review though). 

So what's so great about Three Avacados that I broke away from the easy peasy k-cups?  Well, 100% of their net proceeds go to providing clean water in Uganda, Africa.  Clean water is something I take for granted but it has the power to save lives.  It is so simple but so impactful.  How awesome that a delicious cup of coffee can change a life. And yes, it is delicious, like I would order it even if it didn't provide clean water to people in Uganda-good, as in this one cup per day person  wants another cup cause I just hit the bottom of the mug.  The best way to describe the taste is rich and smooth. 

I ordered a bag of the ground coffee and a Three Avacados travel tumbler.  Shipping with this was free but if you order the coffee alone, shipping is $2.95.  The coffee comes in a 12 oz. bag.  It arrived in just a few days, regular mail from Missouri and they included a couple stickers.  Not only is their coffee DELISH, the travel mug worked great on a recent trip.  I filled it up each day with hotel coffee, rinsed it out and reused the next day and saved a few cups from the landfill.  Their website contains lots of great information about their coffee, their projects and their mission including the story behind their name. 

Thanks Three Avacados for a great cuppa joe and helping me be a Conscientious Consumer.

Friday, August 3, 2012

The Body Shop

I've decided to review some of the more well-known companies that promote fair trade, starting with The Body Shop.  I've always been a little intimidated by The Body Shop store in the mall, not being familiar with their products so I decided to begin with exploring The Body Shop's website.  Personally, when shopping online I can take my time and make a better decision than I would in a store.  I was happy to find information on their values and campaigns as well as many sale items.  Among other good things, The Body Shop has a commitment to responsible sourcing (their website has information about where their products are sourced and how their alliances have helped those communities) and has a campaign to end human trafficking.  Customer reviews on their products help in deciding which items to try.  They offer an extensive selection of products including make-up, men's items and products for the home.  Shipping was a reasonable $5.95 and I saved well over that amount with the sale items I chose, but had I spent $50 shipping would have been free.  I placed the order late Monday night and received the items by Thursday.  Loved the box it came in, packaged in crinkled paper confetti like a personalized gift box and well protected.  

My order from The Body Shop

Not surprisingly, I like their products too.  The coconut hand soap and shower cream I ordered smell great.   Cannot wait to use the Rain Forest Moisture Hair Care Kit on our next road trip.  The sizes are generous enough to share with the family but small enough for travel and even include a comb and a good size tub of hair butter.  That is great for me since I always need some type of leave-in for my hair and often forget to pack it!  Their roll on deoderant (I picked the cool & zesty scent) works great and has a light scent that lasts.  I am happy with all the products I chose. 

When faced with the choice of many bath stores at the mall, the purposeful choice is The Body Shop.   And since this isn't some obscure, unknown little company, it's an easy choice to make.