How to Change the World:
101 Ideas Big & Small to Leave the World a Better Place Than You Found It

by | Feb 6, 2020

So, you want to change the world. And guess what? It’s possible! 

Through acts, some big and some small, we can all contribute to a better world. 

Here is a comprehensive list of things that anybody can do to spread positivity and create a more sustainable and just world for all. 

Wherever your love and passion leans, we have good ideas for you to kick-off your impact.

If you want a “fast-track,” jump to the section that most strikes you and your enthusiasm…

Contents

  1. Start Local: Create the Community That You Want to Live In
  2. Starting with You: Before You Change the World, You Have to Change Yourself.
  3. Connect with Other Human Beings
  4. Spend Your Money Wisely
  5. Simple Ways to Spread Positivity
  6. Start Affecting Systematic Change
  7. How Entrepreneurs and Business Owners Can Change The World
  8. Follow the Lead of these 5 People
  9. Bonus Tip

 

Start Local: Create the Community That You Want to Live In

1. Vote

If the last few years have taught us anything, it is that elections matter. Make your voice heard in a way that counts. 

Visit USA.gov to determine if your state allows you to register online. There, you’ll also find further resources to determine upcoming registration deadlines for important elections happening locally or otherwise.

 

2. Donate Money When You Can

If you are privileged enough to have some extra funds, consider a monthly donation to an organization that shares your values. 

Make sure that you do research and find a place that truly aligns with what you believe. We here at Grow Ensemble are members of the 1% for the Planet community, which connects us with vetted environmental nonprofits working to protect our planet. Seek out similar groups and associations.

3. Donate Time/Skills when Money is Tight

Sometimes, donating money and meeting your own basic needs is not possible. 

If this is the case, then consider donating your time for service. Or, if you have a specific sect of knowledge that could be beneficial to underserved communities – donate that! Obviously, volunteering helps the organization that you are providing services for. But, did you know that there could be personal benefits as well? 

It looks great on a resume, makes you feel good, and gives you much-needed perspective that is good for your soul. 

Websites like GivePulse are a great place to find your next volunteering opportunity.

4. Call Your Congressperson

We are all on our phones so much (more on that later), why not do something useful with that time? 

Global Citizen wrote up a piece with some tips on how to effectively make your voice heard with those currently in power.

5. Take Part in a Protest and Be an Advocate for Change

Power to the people! 

The voice of the mobilized masses has been a catalyst for change throughout history. From the Boston Tea Party to the civil rights movements of the 20th century, taking to the streets and airing your grievances through protest has been a major mover in discourse and policy.

Follow the lead of Time’s 2019 Person of the Year, Greta Thunberg.

Learn more about the young climate activist here

6. Listen to Young People 

It feels redundant to say, but young people are the future. 

By involving youth and listening to them early in life, a society is actively creating an engaged citizenry through early participation.

7. Run for Office

This may seem like a far-fetched pipe dream, but it does not have to be. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez was a bartender before she decided to run for Congress. 

If moving to D.C seems like a stretch, then consider running for local office!

U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

8. Support Local Journalism

As media conglomerates continually buy up more and more media real estate, local journalism is more important than ever. 

The centralization of what we see and what we hear is happening allows for local governments, organizations, and businesses to be held unaccountable. 

9. Attend a Community Council Meeting

Community council’s often dictate what happens in a neighborhood. They often have digital arms to their organizations as well. 

By getting involved on this hyper-local level, then you will have a direct impact on what is happening around you – and thus – can be the change that you want to see in your neighborhood.

10. Go Camping and Get a Park Pass

Our National Parks have been under attack recently. 

By purchasing a National Parks Pass, you are actively helping restore the natural beauty that the United States has to offer. And as an additional bonus, you are getting out of the bustling cities, which can have plenty of benefits on its own!

Ordering a park pass online is easy and you can do it here.

11. Clean Up Some Trash

How many times have you been walking down the street and seen litter on the ground? How simple would it be to bend down, pick it up, and put that in the trash can? 

Yet, and I am guilty of this too, often we don’t even do that. But if everybody did this, what could be the implications? 

Cleaner city streets, green spaces, and waterways are enjoyed by everyone. Mother Earth included.

12. Or, If You Live By The Water… Organize a Beach Clean Up

The oceans are one of our most precious resources on this Earth. So let’s keep them clean. Listen to Adrianne Chandra-Huff from Bodhi Surf + Yoga on the “ritual” of a beach clean up.

13. Start a Community Garden

The Danny Wu community garden in Seattle, WA is an excellent example of why they are so vital. Established in 1975 in the international district, the garden is an essential place for the surrounding community to engage with nature, access safe and healthy food, and build cohesion with neighbors. 

Don’t know where to start? Check out this guide to getting a community garden started where you live.

14. Start Your Own Nonprofit Organization

In the Grow Ensemble community, we welcome ambitious change-makers. Sure, at first glance this may seem like a rather large undertaking, but that’s why we created this helpful guide to get you started.

15. Change Jobs & Work for a Company with PURPOSE 

Big ask? Sure! But your life energy is valuable and your work should be meaningful! Take a look at the list of Certified B Corporation job listings that might work for you.

Starting with You: Before You Change the World, You Have to Change Yourself

16. Meditate

Meditation reduces stress, declutters the mind, and enhances self-awareness (among numerous other things), allowing you to presently and fully tackle the challenges at hand. Great apps like Headspace can get you started with and teach you about meditation along the way.  

17. Read up on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

You know what they say, knowledge is power! Knowing why and how the United Nations hopes to achieve these important goals is a great way to get started on your own personal journey. Plus, they offer some helpful advice on how you can be a part of the solution. 

Check out their website and learn more here

18. Get Inspired at a Gathering!

Surrounding yourself with like-minded individuals who want to change the world is a powerful way to keep your motivation for change alive. With events for all kinds of people with many different focuses, you are sure to find what you are looking for. We created a list of some amazing impact-driven conferences you can check out to give you a place to start.

19. Learn a New Language

Aside from the brain stimulation that comes from learning something new, learning a new language allows you to connect with millions (or billions) of other people! Think of the possibilities!

20. Get out into Nature

It is proven that being in nature reduces fear, stress, and increases pleasant feelings. Not being in nature leads to, unsurprisingly, depression. So get off the couch and go for a hike! 

21. Fix Your Posture

Clinical studies have shown that posture is not just a symptom of a depressed mood, but can actually be a cause! With phones causing what is called the “ihunch,” many of us are developing terrible posture, which has negative psychological and physical effects. So straighten up!

22. Go for a Run! 

AtlasGo is a company that tracks your miles while you run, and donates money to a nonprofit of your choice for every mile that you run! The certified B Corp is hoping to spread.

Listen to our conversation with the co-founder and CEO of AtlasGo and learn more about how you can take your first step towards raising money for a good cause.

23. Make Better Goals

How often have you set a goal down without any clear path of getting there? I am going to write every day! Or I am going to lose 15 pounds! Every goal that you make should have clear benchmarks of how you will get there as well as check-ins to make sure that you are on track. Change, I am Going to Change The World into I Am Going to Change The World by doing X, Y, and Z.

24. Get in Touch With Who You Are

This may seem a little ambiguous, but it is important to know what you care about and what you are good at so that you can best serve the greater world. The magic pyramid is where skills, passions, and what the world needs all intersect. Without careful examination of your capabilities and desires, you might never find out how you can best contribute to society.

25. Kick that Bad Habit – Make The Last Time You Indulged The Last Time

Look – everybody has their vices, but how often do you have feelings of guilt or shame attached to a certain behavior? When negative emotions follow an action, it is time to change that action.

26. Turn that Hobby into a Passion.

Hobbies are something that you do when you have time for it. Passions, you make time for. We live in a busy world full of distractions and clutter. Carve out time to do the thing(s) that makes you happy!

27. Limit Your Screen Time.

Maybe will power and determination won’t help you with this. In that case, check out this list of 11 apps that will help you on your journey.

28. Find a Mentor

Having a mentor can create a massive positive impact in your life. Reducing the negative feelings of imposter syndrome, challenging you to get out of your comfort zone, providing a road map to get where you want, and being somebody to confide in are all valuable aspects of the mentor/mentee relationship. 

29. Worry About Your Own Life

While speaking up and advocating for what you believe in is an important member of being a good citizen, ultimately, you can only control your own life. So before you go trying to fix the world, make sure that your actions are aligning with creating the change you want to see.

30. Practice Unconditional Love

This tip can easily be misconstrued and morphed into something unhealthy and unhelpful. However, if you take it at face value and love somebody without the expectation of anything in return from that love, then you are placing yourself in a position of power and self-determination.

31. Forgive others

Harboring resentments and negative emotions towards others can have harmful effects on your physical and mental states. While reconciliation and reunions are not necessary and can be dangerous in certain situations, the act of mentally letting go of these thoughts can provide much-needed clarity within your own life.

32. Use Social Media Responsibly

Platforms like Facebook and Twitter are incredibly powerful tools. They have swung elections and toppled dictatorial regimes. Make sure that when you are using these tools you do so responsibly. Read further than the headlines, audit your time on these sites, and most importantly, message your grandmother back!

33. Double Check Your Sources

Furthering the last point today’s media environment makes it easier than ever to get caught in echo chambers. We are bombarded with opinions that we agree with and never stop to think whether or not these things are true. It is always healthy to dig deeper and find original sourcing so that you know these outlets are ones that you can trust.

34. Engage in Conscious Media Consumption

It is easy after a long day to plop onto the couch and start binging from your favorite streaming service. But before you do, be conscious of how you are consuming. Are you sitting and staring for long periods of time? Does what you watch contribute to harmful stereotypes or othering of people? Does engaging in this behavior make you happy? Being conscious of these factors and making choices appropriately will help you be more mindful about your choices and, hopefully, more happy with your consumption.

35. Make Education a Continuous Cycle

Never stop learning! If you cannot afford to enroll in a class at your local community college, then go to museums when they are free, join local meetups, or find a group of individuals with similar interests and continue your education.

36. Sleep Consistently

Understanding why we sleep might provide some helpful insight into its power and why it is so important. Creating a healthy and consistent schedule is key for reaping the benefits that sleep has to offer.

37. Don’t Take Anything Personally

By not taking anything personally, you are making a choice to self contain your happiness and emotional well being. By doing this, you are impervious to the opinions of others and make yourself a less fragile person.

 38. Reexamine Your Life Story

What narratives have you created for yourself? Have you convinced yourself that you are somebody who doesn’t do something or can’t? Reexamine and challenge these beliefs. Often times, we set limiting thoughts on ourselves that are unhelpful and don’t allow us to reach our full potential.

Look Outside Yourself: Connecting with Other Human Beings

39. Small Acts for Co-Workers

If you work a 9-5, then it is possible that you spend more time with your co-workers than your loved ones at home. I don’t mention that to get you down, but rather to highlight how important these relationships are in our lives. By doing little things for these people, even the ones you may not like, you can help play a part in creating a positive, cheerful atmosphere in the workplace. And who knows, they may also go the extra mile in helping you out down the line!

40. Say Hello to a Stranger (When it is Safe)

Obviously, do not interrupt somebody who is doing something and God forbid you make somebody feel uncomfortable or unsafe, but when appropriate, say hello and strike a conversation with somebody you don’t know. The world is full of wonderful people and the more that we connect and share our humanity – the better the world will be!

41. Host a Potluck with Friends! Or Meet New People!

Humans have been breaking bread with each other for thousands of years. Food is a common language across cultures and generations. In our go, go, go society – it is easy to let this aspect of your humanity and sense of community slip through the cracks. But don’t let it! Companies like Civic Dinners have created a platform where you can reaffirm that sense of community and build relationships with people you may not have before, all over a serving of your favorite homemade meal.

Find, or start, your next dinner here.

42. Text Less, Call More

Texting allows us to stay connected in ways previously unimaginable, but too often we skip the voices of others for the convenience of a simple text. So instead of simply shooting off that text, press the call button next time!

43. Tweet Less

There may be world leaders who could do less of both of these things, but that’s a separate issue. Twitter (and other social media outlets) have been proven to be harmful to our brains and mental health. Our brains just weren’t designed for that sort of information overload.

44. Stop Assuming

You know what happens when you assume… But seriously, watch what happens to your self-esteem and relationships when you stop assuming the intent of others. You will find that A) you feel better and B) your relationships and communication skills greatly improve.

45. Be Conscious of Who You Surround Yourself With

The people that you surround yourself with directly impact your mood, actions, and thoughts. Watch what happens when you befriend people that you respect and that motivate you and inspire you to achieve great things. Like-minded individuals who push you to be better and do better will ultimately make for lifelong partners. The old saying goes, “If you are the smartest person in the room, then you are in the wrong room.”

Spend Your Money Wisely: Making Change with Change

46. Switch Your Bank

Between overdraft fees and socially irresponsible investments, the banking industry has developed quite the reputation. But everybody needs a bank account, right? What options do we have other than these big multinational banks? Well, there are options. Banks like Aspiration are working to build a better community. Specifically, they donate 10% of every dollar deposited to a charitable organization, making them the leader in the financial industry. 

Find out how you can become a part of a better solution, here.

47. Use Ridwell Instead of Landfills

Ridwell is a service that helps you recycle those hard to get rid of items (like batteries) that often end up in landfills.

48. Order Groceries with Imperfect Foods

Imperfect Foods is reducing food waste by delivering the items that grocery stores don’t want (because of aesthetics) directly to your door!

49. Shop at Farmer’s Markets

Farmer’s Markets are an incredible way to not only support local farmers but also get fresh, delicious produce. The agriculture industry and the transportation of produce all over the country are major factors for climate change and supporting local farms is a great way to mitigate these harms as well as stop the monopolization of your food sources!

 50. Support Local Businesses

That book you love? Probably available at a local bookstore. The convenience of online shopping and the reach of corporations is slowly ruining our local economies. Do your part and support a local business!

51. Repurpose Waste (And Drink More Beer?)

Okay, maybe the second one is a stretch, but Grain4Grain, a company based in San Antonio, TX that takes spent grain (the primary waste product in the beer brewing process) and turns it into a flour, is making it more enticing to indulge. Not only do they divert this food waste, but they have also made it their mission to support local families in need by donating a pound of flour for every pound sold. You can hear their founder, Yoni Medhin, talk about his company, hereBottoms up!

52.  Say NO to Fast Fashion

Aside from the low quality, fast fashion is also a major contributor to unfair labor and unsustainable manufacturing. Although higher quality pieces of clothing do cost more, they will last longer and you can sleep well at night knowing that you are not supporting sweatshops or the perpetuation of climate change.

53. Purchase at Places That Share Your Values

There was a lot of hoopla over donations from the leaders of companies like Hobby Lobby and Chick-Fil-A to organizations that discriminate against the LGBTQ+ community. Knowing that sort of fact may lead your decision on whether to purchase products from these companies. Do the research and see which businesses are worth supporting with your money!

54. Give the Gift of Social Impact

The next time you have to purchase a gift for somebody, make sure that you are spreading the message of sustainability and conscious consumerism! Here is a list to get you started.

55. Start a Socially Responsible Stock Portfolio

If you are trying to spend your money with the betterment of society in mind, then investing in ETFs and Mutual Funds can be scary. Who knows where your broker is putting your money? Well, nowadays there are lots of apps and brokers who will only invest your money in socially responsible businesses. Check out some of those here.

56. Do Real Research

Nowadays, major corporations know that younger generations find corporate responsibility to be a mandatory aspect of doing business. They will devote whole sectors of their companies to doing “public good”, while still maintaining the systematic pillars of their model that is detrimental to societies around the globe (think Shell with their drilling or Amazon with their labor conditions). Make sure that you do not get duped by P.R stunts when finding companies to support.

Spreading Positivity: Simple Ways to Spread ‘Good’

57. Purge your Closet (And Donate!)

Do you have any clothes that you don’t wear anymore? Take them out of your closet and bring them to a local Goodwill or Thrift Store. Or, recycle those clothes! (More on that later).

58. Use Reusable Grocery Bags

According to the Wall Street Journal, over 100 billion plastic shopping bags are used each year. That is… way too many. We all should be doing our part to cut this number down and reusable canvas or hemp bags are a great way to make that happen.

59. Ditch the Car – Take a Walk.

Henry David Thoreau had quite a few ideas about walking and he knew nothing of the CO2 emissions of cars. Walking is a great way to connect with your surroundings (and save the planet!) 

60. Speak Up 

Human Rights Campaigner, Ginette Sagan, said, “Silence in the face of injustice is complicity with the oppressor” If you see a person or people being mistreated or facing injustice, thinking it isn’t right. Open your mouth and say something.

61. Marvel at the Small Things

We live in an incredibly complex, beautiful world. Stopping and appreciating just how remarkable it truly is proven to make you happier.

62. Be a Good Neighbor

Do you see your neighbor’s waste bins at the curb? Take them in! Maybe you haven’t seen them in a few days? Make some baked goods and bring them over and check in on them. Doing these random acts of kindness helps create a sense of community with the people who live closest to you!

63. Donate Your Unused Airline Miles to Reunite Refugees with their Families

Miles 4 Migrants is a nonprofit that takes your unused airline miles and uses those to book flights for refugees to reunite with their families. Listen to Andy Freedman, the organization’s co-founder and managing director, here.

64. Don’t get caught up in the outrage machine

Some things are deserving of outrage: the climate crisis, kids in cages, and imminent war. Some things are not: celebrities’ opinions, gaffes, and bad calls by sports officials. Know what is important to our world and…

Start Affecting Systematic Change

Our Planet: Global Warming and Climate Change

 

65. Start Composting at Home! 

According to the EPA, 28% of what gets thrown away is food and yard waste. Both of these items are compostable. By keeping these items out of landfills, you are helping reduce the amount of CO2 emissions that come from these harmful landfills. 

Here is an awesome list of products to get you started on your composting journey! 

66. Plant a Tree

Don’t just plant a tree anywhere (there are regulations and zoning laws that prevent this), but being a modern-day Johnny Appleseed isn’t as hard as you may think. Here is a great resource.

67. Recycle Your Used Clothing with Helpsy.

B-Corp, Helpsy, helped keep 20 million pounds of clothing waste out of landfills last year. Alex Husted, founder and CEO, as well as the rest of the team, want to radically reshape how people think about clothing recycling.

68. Ditch the Plastic Water Bottle 

More than 60 million plastic water bottles end up in landfills each day. Each day. Let’s fix that. Companies like Klean Kanteen are making awesome alternatives to the common plastic water bottle.

69. Reduce your Dishes

By getting rid of a few plates, mugs, and bowls, you will have to do less dishes! Which is a major plus. But more importantly, you will reduce the amount of water that you use doing dishes and with water being our most valuable resource – this is an easy way to start saving gallons.

70. Use Reusable Utensils Instead of Plastic

Reusable utensils are a great way to mitigate plastic waste from eating out! They can be made from stainless steel, bamboo, or wood. Regardless, they don’t end up in landfills!

71. Try to Follow the Zero-waste Hierarchy

Christopher Moken has made recycling mattresses his passion. He applies the zero waste hierarchy to his business practices and implores you to do so in your personal life! Lindsey Mccoy has also been a changemaker in this area with her company, Plaine Products.

72. Recycle Responsibly 

Of the garbage that Americans throw out, half could be recycled. And if you are one of the fine folks who recycle regularly, then maybe you are a culprit of the greasy pizza box or half-full coffee cup in the recycling? Either way, as a country we are not good at recycling. 

Here is an awesome video explaining why.

For example, have you thought about the proper way to dispose of your mattress? 

73. Quit Wasting Food

According to the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, “roughly ⅓ of food produced for human consumption every year gets lost or wasted.  Some helpful tips for doing your part: shop locally and for specific meals, don’t let your eyes get bigger than your stomach, and eat your leftovers!

74. Become a Regenerative Farmer!

By becoming a regenerative farmer, you are actively reversing climate change. Actually! Lots of our previous tips are great ways to do your part in helping slow the crisis, but regenerative farming practices increase soil integrity and biodiversity, resulting in an improved water cycle and stimulating carbon drawdown. 

Get inspired by watching this documentary The Biggest Little Farm.

Our Planet: Clean Water

75. Reduce your Time in the Shower (But, like, wash yourself)

Certified B Corp, Tom’s of Maine, has already come up with some awesome ways to reduce your shower time, but the one way they did not mention in their article is cold showers! Benefitting both your health and monthly bills, cold showers are a great way to get clean!

76. Treat your Plumbing Responsibly.

Don’t know what is allowed to go down you sink? Curious about your toilet? Check out the Texas Government’s recs for keeping clean pipes and sewers for your city, here.

77. Support Organizations Like the Clean Water Network

The CWN’s main mission is to protect our waterways from polluters. Clean water is vital for ecosystems and the effects of not keeping our streams and rivers pollutant-free could be dire for much of the natural world as well as human health.

78. Use Clean Cleaning Products

We don’t think about the damage that our soaps and detergents are doing once they go down the drain. By switching to “clean” cleaning products you are helping keep the waterways harmful chemical free! Meliora is a Grown Ensemble trusted brand. Check out our interview with the founder, Kate Jakubas and see why.

Take a Stand Against Gun Violence

79. Join an Organization

If you are tired of the endless cycle of gun violence, then Cease Fire may be a good place to start. With helpful resources and a long list of affiliates for people to join, this is one of many outlets seeking for more responsible gun ownership and safety.

80. Become a Journalist

Well, not really, but if you write a letter to the editor at your local newspaper – you can make your voice heard.

81. Host a Meeting

The Violence Policy Center has created a step by step guide so that anybody can host an informational meeting and educate others about gun violence!

Help Our Friends Living on the Streets: Homelessness

82. Sharpen Your Carpentry Skills

While there is not a housing shortage for those who do not have homes, existing homes are always in need of a fix-up. You can call your local Habitat chapter by calling (800) 422-4828 or visiting http://www.habitat.org

83. Train Populations Affected by Homelessness

The National Coalition for Homelessness says, “Direct service providers may be able to use many services and skills, including secretarial, catering, plumbing, accounting, management, carpentry, public relations, fundraising, legal, medical, dentistry, writing, child care, counseling, tutoring, or mentoring.” If you have a skill that could be parlayed into a job for another – teach them that skill!

84. Make a Friend

You can help create community with people experiencing homelessness in a number of ways. Invite people to public events or organize events like board game night or an open mic poetry reading at a shelter! Convince other people of means to come along as well!

85. Connect with Existing Coalitions

People have already done the heavy lifting and now all you have to do is support them in your missions. Here is an excellent list of existing coalitions!

How Entrepreneurs and Business Owners Can Change The World

86. Consider your Social Impact

How does your company affect your local company? What about the global community? The planet? By considering these factors and changing harmful practices business owners can be a key part in making the world a better place for everybody.

87. Hire Disenfranchised Groups

Amplio Recruiting, founded by Chris Chancey, is a recruiting agency that places refugees into jobs across the U.S. They have already placed 5,000 refugees into jobs across the country. That’s a lot of people! By hiring disenfranchised groups business owners can be a key role in changing the narrative and histories of people from marginalized communities.

88. Make Diversity a Priority.

The McKinsey Institute, as well as many others, have proven why diversity is important. Not only do diverse teams perform better, at every level of business, but allowing new viewpoints into previously homogenous rooms provides new insights and allows for better problem-solving.

89. Create a Thriving Company Culture

Claire Booth, founder and CEO, of Lux Insights, states it best, “Our values were decided upon based on who we are as people. When we hire people who align with our values, they align with us, which is what allows us to deepen those relationships. We also find clients who align with those values tend to be the deepest relationships and the long-standing accounts we have been able to hold on to over the years.”

Make sure that the people you hire share your values and are aligned in mission. This increases employee retention and productivity! A true win-win. If you don’t know where to start, then people like Becci Gould, founder of Kin & Co, are a great resource!

90. Become a Member of 1% for the Planet

Join a growing list of businesses that are helping keep our planet livable for future generations.

91. Consider Shifting Your Model to Become a Certified B Corp

This will take time, but here is an awesome resource for you to start your journey. 

92. Give Back to the Community

Donate your product or service to a local fundraiser, sponsor a charitable event, or maybe give the office a day off to volunteer somewhere! Whatever you choose to do, make sure that your business is doing it’s part in giving back to the community that keeps it running.

93. Support the Next Generation

Become a mentee! Volunteer to speak at High Schools and Universities! Volunteer to judge at Youth Leadership Competitions! Help young entrepreneurs network! You can help give the next generation the same advantages that you may have had, or be the resource that you wish you had!

94. Switch from Gas to Renewable Energy

There is a myriad of ways for you to be an environmental change-maker as a business owner. Learn about them here.

95. Give Someone a Second Chance

In our society, somebody is supposed to have “served their time” and be full members of society upon their release from prison. But far too often, this is not the case. The stigma of being a former felon is real and roughly 27% of those who have served time are unemployed, far exceeding the national rate. This greatly increases the risk of recidivism. 

Companies like Defy Ventures are doing an amazing service by helping place former prisoners in meaningful jobs or even helping them start their own businesses. You can follow suit by giving somebody a second chance at life in your business.

Follow the Lead of These 5 People

96. Liz Powers from ArtLifting

ArtLifting “Connects Socially Conscious Companies With Talented Artists Impacted By Homelessness Or Disabilities“

97. Cemal Ezal from Change Please

Change Please “is empowering the homeless community by training them to be baristas. We provide full barista training, jobs paying London Living Wage and support with housing, bank accounts, and mental wellbeing.”

98. Adrianne Chandra-Huff from Bodhi Surf & Yoga 

Bodhi Surf & Yoga encourages responsible tourism and empowers tourists to interact and engage with the local community combined with the awesome experience of learning how to surf in Costa Rica! Her promotion of voluntourism has created a sense of responsibility for the places that people visit and encourages folks to not just visit, but truly experience and actually benefit the local communities that people are traveling to. 

99. Neil Bluementhal from Warby Parker

Since the day Warby Parker started until now, they have donated over 5 million pairs through their Buy a Pair, Give a Pair program. Learn more about it in the link above!

100. Yvon Chouinard of Patagonia

Through advocacy and education campaigns, Patagonia has always been at the forefront of environmental justice. Pair that with their devotion to fair trade and treating employees the right way and you have a company that is at the forefront of doing socially responsible business.

Bonus Tip

101. Treat Your Mistakes Like Lessons and Learn From Them

Nobody is perfect and everybody will make decisions or take actions that are harmful to the greater good. 

But if you know how to change the world, then you must create positive change, first within yourself, then throughout the greater community and recognize when an action isn’t in line with these values. 

By holding yourself accountable, while giving yourself the grace to make mistakes, then you are priming your influence to be contagious throughout the entire world.

Henry Burgess-Marshall

Henry Burgess-Marshall

Founder & CEO, Maribel Creative Agency

Henry is an entrepreneur based out of Seattle, Wa. He is an avid reader, writer, and lover of nature. His passion for people and connection with others has led him to work with some incredible individuals and companies. He is always looking for the next exciting adventure, whether it be in his personal life or business pursuit. 
You can connect with Henry on LinkedIn and at his Company’s website here

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