5 Companies that Do Well by Doing Good

This Fall we joined Pivot TV in sharing their shows that encourage dialogue around social themes. Inspired by their new show Human Resources, which follows the innovative company TerraCycle, we are featuring five companies that are doing well by doing good. The show airs Fridays at 10pm, only on Pivot. Did you miss the first episode? You can view it online here. Read on to find out about TerraCycle and other cool companies making a difference. A fundamental aspect of the Students of the World mission is to provide opportunities for students to use their creativity to make a difference. Making a difference in the world is a consistent ambition for our generation. According to a Bentley University study featured on Forbes, 85% of millennials said they want to work for a socially responsible or ethical company. Additionally, a staggering 91% shared that a company’s social impact efforts are important when they are considering which companies to work for.

So what are some outstanding companies that are doing well by doing good? Check out this list of our 5 favorite examples.


1. Sevenly


Sevenly shirts designed for Knots of Love from the Newport Beach Independent

Through its “cause art” movement, Sevenly merges aesthetic design with well-designed philanthropy. Each week, Sevenly partners with a new charity to raise funds and awareness over the course of seven days. Every item of merchandise purchased--from cause-inspired shirts to artistic prints--gives $7 to the weekly charity. Sevenly has a mission of leading a “generation to generosity” and has proven that it only takes a week to make a major difference.


2. TerraCycle


Tom Szaky, CEO of TerraCycle

TerraCycle embodies the maxim: “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” Started by Tom Szaky as a 20-year-old freshman at Princeton, TerraCycle is an innovative company whose mission is to “eliminate the idea of waste.” It has become one of the fastest growing green companies in the world. They'll take anything and everything that is landfill-bound–from potato chip bags to cigarette butts–and recycle, up-cycle, re-use, or otherwise transform these objects into something new.The company transforms millions of pounds of waste every year, making a global impact on preserving the environment.


3. Warby Parker


A pair of glasses to go to a community in need from Warby Parker


Community members learning to carry out eye exams from Warby Parker

Each month, this fashionable-yet-charitable brand of prescription eyeglasses and sunglasses totals up the number of glasses sold and and matches the cost of sourcing these glasses through a donation to a nonprofit partner. The company is by no means near-sighted: these nonprofit partners then educate men and women in developing countries to carry out eye exams and sell glasses to their communities. In turn, the sustainable model allows more people to make their own living.


4. TOMS Shoes


Blake Mycoskie, the founder of TOMS, from Business of Fashion

After befriending children in Argentina who did not have adequate shoes, TOMS founder Blake Mycoskie created the now widely recognized and beloved soles that have soul. With every pair of shoes purchased, TOMS promises to give a pair of new shoes to a child in need. Since the company’s beginnings, this One for One® model has expanded into TOMS Eyewear, which restores one person’s sight with every pair of eyewear purchased, and TOMS Roasting Co., bringing someone one week’s worth of clean water with every bag of coffee purchased. Today, TOMS has given more than 10 million pairs of new shoes and helped restore the sight of 200,000 people.


5. Madcap Coffee Company


Coffee growers in Ethiopia from Madcap


Trevor Corlett and Ryan Knapp, co-founders of Madcap Coffee Company from Madcap

Madcap Coffee Company, a purveyor of wholesale and retail specialty coffees, has committed itself to socially responsible business practices that are as high-quality as their decaf. Rather than buying coffee beans indirectly, Madcap establishes strong relationships with growers in Colombia, El Salvador, and elsewhere. Working closely with growers to improve their crop and offering farmers better prices for their quality products, the coffee company offers a blend that serves everyone.

We would love to hear how you use your creativity to give back to your community, so use the hashtag #HumanResources and tweet @SOW!

Check out new episodes of Human Resources Fridays at 10pm on Pivot TV and learn more about the show here.

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