Here comes the last month of the year. You have already noted it because the weather has changed, people around you, are increasingly sneezing and coughing, the days are shorter and of course all shops and malls remind you that you have only some days left to fulfill all the wish-lists you received. Part of this end year period, you also probably noted all the charities which are looking for more help and donations. Your sensitivity and kindness are mostly affected during this month, resulting in a melted feeling between joy – as you are gathering with family, friends and amazed by light decorations in the city – and sadness – as you feel some guilt for the ones who are less lucky than you are. How to feel good then?
Media were overwhelmed by many political events this year. But the main one remains the Syrian crisis. Like the campaign made by Save the Children in 2014, Most Shocking Second a Day, Ikea and the Red Cross have created an in store communication operation to raise awareness about the Syrian crisis in its Slependen, Norway flagship store. Among the well-known perfect showrooms, there was one that was the exact replica of a real Syrian residence in Damascus: Rana and her family of 9’s home. The famous tags where you usually read some exotic names such as “KNOXHULT”, challenging to pronounce if you don’t speak Swedish, and its description, in the temporary showroom the tags contains descriptions of how people live, survive, and how to help. This 25m² of Syria installation was live from 17-31 October, seen by about 40 000 visitors weekly and enabled the raise of about 22 million euros for the Red Cross’ efforts in Syria.
Combining purchases and charities is something that grows more and more in business models. One of them is TOMS. Their operation “One for One” started with shoes. For a pair of shoes bought, a pair of shoes is given to a child in need. According to The Economist, in 2012 TOMS asked a group of academics to investigate to find out if its operations worked. The findings were that handing out the free shoes had “no effect on overall shoelessness, shoe ownership (older shoes were presumably thrown away), general health, foot health or self-esteem”, leaving the company with room for improvements. TOMS changed its strategy to have a (real) big impact; for examples “One for One”:
- on eyewear: for each TOMS Eyewear purchased, a free sight-correction is provided to a person in need
- on coffee: each bag of TOMS Roasting Co. Coffee provides a week’s supply of water to a person in need (140 liters)
- on bags: TOMS Bags purchased support training needed to help provide a safe birth and training of school staff and crisis counselors to help prevent and respond to instances of bullying
Acting well and better
In the need of ideas for wish-list? Tired of receiving knitted sweater? Why not asking for garments that are made of recycled materials? Even football starts to come on this field! In collaboration with Parley, Adidas has announced the creation of new jerseys for Real Madrid and Bayern Munich: monochrome jersey made of recycled plastic collected from the ocean. Like other brands that started this process before, such as G-Star, Adidas extends the change switch by reaching football fans.
Feeling good? Hopefully yes! In any case I wish you happy end-year celebrations!