How Eco-Friendly Fashion Can Create a Bigger Impact using Shared Value
It began with a tortoise. After living in Ecuador for 10 + years and visiting the Galapagos Islands on several occasions we came across Lonesome George—its most famous resident and a worldwide conservation icon. As the last surviving Pinta Tortoise, Lonesome George’s cautionary tale of extinction unfolded as a result of human actions and mismanagement of scarce resources. Inspired by his story, we began Lonesome George & Co. to educate tomorrow’s youth and to prevent other Lonesome George situations from happening at a time of frightening and increasing extinction rates. Our triple-bottom-line business model ensures that 10% of every purchase directly funds youth educational programs that teach and empower future generations—to make better choices in our interdependent world. Lonesome George’s spirit and legacy lives on through the clothes we wear and the choices we make.
Lonesome George & Co. rose up with a mission – to create a for-profit company that could have a direct impact on the community it served, the countries it operated in and in the consumers mind. It began in the Galapagos when Eduardo Balarezo opened one store and saw the incredible consumer demand for choices that can shape the world. Now, with over 5 locations and a booming online store, the company is poised to take the last surviving Pinta Tortoise’s lesson global to inspire a movement of Agents of Change. Read more about our icon here: http://www.lonesomegeorge.net/pages/story-of-change
By developing an innovative product – in this case, Impact Apparel – that would provide the capital to invest in educational programs serving the Galapagos youth, the company is able to shift people’s behavior and generate clusters of development to better the community.
The fact is – people want to help change the world but many don’t know how. Luckily, Lonesome George & Co. and other socially responsible companies give consumers access to choices that matter.
The success shows that this type of shared value creation model works. It redefines products, value chains and invests in the world’s most valuable resource, people. In the future, we need to stop giving fish away and start teaching people how to fish!
The founder Eduardo Balarezo totally knows how – if planned right – eco-friendly and socially responsible fashion will create a BIG impact.
Impact apparel that makes a statement – and create action. The goal is to empower a new generation of leaders and contribute to a new social business model that reconciles company, community and government—creating a virtuous cycle of prosperity for all.
Globally, we are empowering youth and community leaders in a shared effort to conserve local resources in partnership with Outward Bound. In the Galapagos Islands, we have also joined with Scalesia Foundation, a leading NGO in localized conservation education. Proceeds from Lonesome George & Co. apparel fund our work beyond outdoor classrooms to a growing network of change agents—inspiring students, supporters, advocates, and leaders alike.