Gazing out at the world from behind our computers, we admire those who show drive, initiative and spirit to make it a better place.
Whether it’s an organisation, advocacy group, or an individual like this hero who planted a whole forest single-handedly, it’s inspiring to see this kind of hard work and dedication across the globe.
Feeling a similar responsibility, A Good Company was founded to inspire a change away from mindless consumption towards a world where people take conscious decisions as consumers.
"Our philosophy has alway been to develop and to be able to contribute more." - Anders Ankarlid, Founder & CEO
In the beginning (remember, we just turned one whole year on 1 March!) we went about this by developing and producing sustainable, everyday products so that people could make an easy switch and hopefully inspire others to do so as well.
When we saw that our community of customers with the same dedication to this notion grew steadily, we wanted to further inspire people to make little changes in their everyday lives. Maybe it's a switch to buying more sustainably produced food or ditching the car for public transportation to a greater extent than before.
It's like Anders, our founder says: "Our philosophy has always been to develop and to be able to contribute more". And so this platform with interviews and editorials – A Good Community – was born.
The trees were the roots to everything
Early on, we decided that we wanted to collaborate with someone who helps replenish the worlds tree-population. We found WeForest, an organisation that plants trees in the Luanshya district of the Zambian Copperbelt.
They provide local farmers with training and tools to diversify their sources of income while they plant and protect local forests. As a result, the farmers receive a higher income, diversify their economic activities and learn new skills.
Replenishing the worlds tree-population through the Zambia Tree Project
We had been working with them for a while when we decided that we wanted to scale up our contribution to a sustainable society, as we ourselves developed and grew as a company.
We guess you could call the Zambia tree project, project zero.
Introducing A Good Foundation
Building on that community contribution we decided to launch A Good Foundation at the beginning of 2020 because we felt we could do more than we already were.
We wanted to go beyond our usual scope and use our resources and expertise to support sustainable projects in communities around the globe. In order for it to be logical for us as a company, we decided to circle in on a few key areas of support:
- Resource preservation
- Recycling and individual circularity
- Industry circularity
- Sustainable entrepreneurship
- Consumer Culture and its environmental impact
Education, education, education
To echo former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair’s often-quoted speech, we want to focus on projects that provide education and training. We actually went through a couple of ideas before deciding on the eventual model.
Initially we were going to donate products, but then decided that while this would be beneficial in the short-term, it wasn’t effective for tackling the root causes. This is why we want to focus on education and training as these are key to enabling long-term change and developing the next generation of sustainable thinkers.
Project One - The Circular Children’s Book
We're beyond proud to share that our very first project within the framework of A Good Foundation is in partnership with Stockholm University.
Together with our co-activist, Dr. Pamela Schultz Nybacka, Course Director of Publishing Studies at Stockholm University, we are developing a children's book about circularity.
Our co-activist, Dr. Pamela Schultz Nybacka
We thought the idea of teaching children about the importance of circular economy was brilliant (without necessarily having it turn out as a 200 pages long dissertation) while at the same time teaching the parents who read to their kids.
The book itself will be made from stone paper and printed with soy ink, as a manifestation of the topics covered in the story itself.
We’re still at early stages but delighted to be working with Dr. Pamela Schultz Nybacka and excited to see the end result.
You can read more about the Circular Children's Book Project here, and follow our progress.
The money of it all
So how do we pay for all our efforts you may wonder. First of all we decided that we wanted to work with donations from our net sales of A Good Company and not our profit, as opposed to many other companies. This means that we donate to A Good Foundation even if we aren't making a profit.
After many calculations and twists and turns, we landed on 4%, calling it the 4% model. As a one year old startup, 4% of net sales is a lot, and currently it's the very most we can commit to while remaining operational. In the future, we hope to be able to contribute more by increasing efficiency.
100% funds donated, 100% transparency
For this to work, we knew that we had to be as transparent with the foundation as we are with out eCommerce. We certainly don't want to be caught in an administrative trap where a lot of the money donated goes to overhead costs (which is the case with many charities). Therefore, once a donation is made it is allocated to a project and goes straight to where it’s needed, for all to see.
We can make sure of this by excluding all intermediaries and working directly with the people on the ground in each respective community.
How can you get involved?
If you are an organisation wishing to apply to be part of A Good Foundation, you can apply here. If you would like to recommend an organisation in your local community, please share that with us here.
We welcome all tips and recommendations!
For questions regarding A Good Foundation, please click here or email firstname.lastname@example.org