There have been times during my career in Natural Health, Beauty and Skincare that I have questioned whether I am “doing enough”, in the sense of doing my part to make the world a better place, a cleaner, more workable and loving place. It has always been a part of my own mission to be a ‘giver’, rather than simply a consumer of people, things, the earth and her resources. The perfectionist in me doesn’t give up easily of course and this can lead to a sense of wondering if any actions we take as individuals will be enough to leave a legacy for our children and their children. So I decided to take a look at all the companies that I support, write about or work with and find out what they are really doing to support this mission.
Aveda is a brand I have followed and used since my early days of converting from more mainstream products to those with natural, safer, less toxic ingredients (over 17 years ago). As a brand that has been blending the principles of Nature and Science since 1978, Aveda has in many ways pioneered the way for companies to be sustainable and environmentally sound in manufacturing, ingredients and packaging. Here are some of their ‘firsts’:-
- First company to sign the Ceres Principle in 1989 – a nonprofit concerned with assisting business leaders to deal with issues of climate change, water scarcity and other sustainability challenges
- First Beauty Company to manufacture with 100% wind power at its primary facility.
- First Beauty Company to receive a Cradle to Cradle Charter for its commitment to sustainable products, packaging and production.
- And finally, in 2013, the first to receive a Leaders Award from Cradle to Cradle for its role in pioneering environmental leadership.
In 1999 Aveda started an Earth Month Campaign held every April which has since raised more than $44million to support environmental projects around the globe. This year funds from the sale of their gorgeous ‘Light the Way’ natural soy wax candle scented with organic vanilla, cinnamon and ylang ylang from Madagascar (RRP $19), will go directly to WaterAid projects. This not for profit has helped 27 countries and 19.2million people with better water management towards their Vision of “A world where everyone has access to clean water and sanitation”, something which we can often take for granted. Learn more by visiting www.wateraid.org.au, and purchase your candle at Aveda stores and salons around the country or at www.aveda.com.au
Swisse is an Aussie brand with humble origins in a warehouse in Melbourne almost 40 years ago. Based on the founding principle ‘Celebrate Life Every Day’, Swisse are well on their way to fulfilling their mission “To make millions of people all over the world healthier and happier”. This is something that lights me up too. But perhaps what is easy to say is harder to do, there needs to be action to match the Vision. Swisse do this by partnering with a number of organisations to do fundraising, offer nutritional support, as well as initiating research or incentive schemes and to do this each employee gets allocated a day of work to volunteer for these partners.
Aswell as collaborations, Swisse has the Celebrate Life Foundation, which as the name suggests, is all about helping people celebrate life and live fully each day. In a practical sense, this is about addressing the challenges of Australia’s growing rates of preventable diseases and promoting the 3 pillars of lifelong wellness: Mindfulness, Movement and Nutrition. To do this they support charities that work in these realms, championing campaigns and research initiatives and ensuring movement towards their lofty goals.
Companies like Swisse that want to know their impact join LBG, which is the global standard which measures the contributions companies make as well as the results. LBG’s Director, Simon Robinson, says that Swisse has contributed well above the average for the last couple of years, in terms of employee volunteering as well as profit donation.
Another socially conscious brand is Trilogy, founded in NZ and based on Rosehip oil, one of nature’s true ‘miracles’ with anti-inflammatory and regenerative properties that go above and beyond in the realms of healing and ant-ageing.
Trilogy have always been big believers in ‘giving back’ as the social responsibility of having a company that makes any claims of doing good for the world. To that aim they have always given to local causes and fundraisers, however 3 years ago they saw the possibility of a more global possibility to empower women.
They began working with So They Can – a not-for-profit that not only educates children but also supports initiatives for women to become self-sufficient in areas of severe need such as Kenya and Tanzania. The important piece here is sustainability; So They Can works with women to alleviate poverty long term rather than just giving handouts and hoping for the best.
Trilogy even invested in a rosehip seed press for the community in Lesotho where they source their Rosehip Oil from. This kind of ‘impact investing’ can help isolated harvesting communities like this to have a major income producing opportunity they might not otherwise have.
Please check out these brands and the wonderful support they offer through donation and projects worldwide. Let’s all focus on the difference we can make, rather than the things we cannot change.
Trilogy and Swisse also available at PRICELINE Australia wide.