Because we want to battle indifference and show what we can achieve when we work together on a goal.
We have been planting one tree for every product we sell with House Raccoon right from the start. The first year we earned nothing with House Raccoon so that meant paying €5000 out of our own pocket towards planting trees. We are not rich so that hurt.
Furthermore, on a product panel we did a few months ago, random customers were so indifferent about the trees we were planting that we had to do something.
So we started brainstorming about doing a project. A project that allows us to donate all together so that we will all together reach a goal we would otherwise never reach. And in a much quicker way. Therefore, we started the ‘Be Your Own Change Campaign‘ to plant trees. Planting trees is one of the only short term measures that give us the time we need to develop better sustainable technology. It is a chance for each of us to be iconic. Instead of looking at governments, we can solve the climate change problem ourselves. There is simply no excuse in looking to others, you all have to be your own change.
What do we gain from it? In total honest, hopefully, some exposure and likeminded people with whom we, after this, can still keep planting a massive amount of trees.
Also in total honest, if we just wanted to make millions of dollars for ourselves, this would not be the right way. The right way would be to mass produce everything we make in low-cost countries and transport goods all over the world in the cheapest and dirtiest way possible. Instead of this, we chose to do what we love. We started a brand where everything is produced with social workers 5km from our home. We started a brand that plant trees with every product we sell. We started a brand that improves the world with every sell. Because that’s what we really want. We chose to be our own change.
The only thing we need for making this campaign a success is 500.000 people giving just a humble €1.
So, share our message with all your family, friends and followers so that we are able to reach enough people! Be sure to invite them to our facebook event. If you really want to get involved, just send us a message at [email protected] with your phone number.
The trees planted with this campaign will be a part of the Forest Garden program of Trees for the Future. The €0,10 is enough to provide African farmers with the tools, knowledge and seeds to successfully plant their own trees in a 4 year program. Because they are not paid for doing this, the cost per tree stays incredibly low. The farmers however get the most out of it. They receive a full 4-year education project which learns them how to engage in regenerative agriculture with the help of the trees. This allows them to increase the fertility of their soil and increase their income 10-times so that hunger is drastically reduced and there is a great surge in education and woman empowerment.
Trees will be planted in the Forest Garden program in Cameroon, Kenya, Senegal, Uganda, Guinea and Tanzania. Planting a tree in these countries has the most impact on climate, soil, income (and thus education and woman empowerment).
After the end of the campaign, we will publish official invoices and financial statements for the full amount donated to the ‘Be Your Own Change Campaign‘ (Click here). If you subscribe to our special tree e-mail list, you will also get updates from us the coming 4 years of the projects we were able to fund thanks to your donations.
Trees for the future has a unique transparent approach. They are one of the only tree-planting organisations in the world that put all their (independently audited!) financial statements online. So we can be 100% sure that your trees will be planted for real! Check also here their latest impact report.
Because your donation on this page will convince others to do the same. Trees for the Future focuses on the practical side of planting the trees and relies on campaigns like ours to get their funding. Although after this campaign, we absolutely recommend to keep on giving through their own donation page.
- 1 – There are 50000 trees per square kilometre of tropical rainforest. This means that 5 million trees create 100 square kilometer of new forest. This are 20000 football fields of trees. This is enough to create a forest that’s is as large as Brussels, Ghent or Antwerp.
- 2 – Central park contains 20000 trees and is 3,41 square kilometre large. New york city is 783,9 square kilometre. Planting 5 million trees is the same as expanding Central Park so that it covers the whole New York City area.
- 3 – New trees take about 4 tons of C02 out of the atmosphere in the first 100 years (about 2 tons in the tree and 2 tons in the soil). 5 million trees will be able to absorb 20 million tons of C02 in the first 100 year. The average Belgian person has a carbon emission of 8,33 tons of C02 per year. So 5 million trees are enough to compensate emissions of 2,5 million people.
- 4 – The carbon emission of a car is on average 2,8 tons of C02 per year. 5 million trees is the same as getting 7,14 million cars off the road for one year or 100.000 people that compensate for the carbon emission of their car use during their whole life.
- 5 – The 5 million trees will be planted in Forest Gardens (these are permaculture or regenerative agriculture projects). Every Forest Garden contains about 4000 trees and delivers food and income for one family (in a broad sense, mostly multiple generations). There will be 1250 families which income will rise with 400% and who will not need to worry about food again. This are about 25000 people. Because large parts of the harvest are sold on the local market, more than 100000 people will have better food. In the program, farmers are encouraged to pass on their knowledge. In the long term, this means that hundreds of thousands to millions of people will no longer be hungry and have better income. This leads to higher education and emancipation and a drastic reduction of forced immigration to other countries.
We looked at a lot of options and the USA NPO Trees For The Future simply was the best. They have more than 30-years experience in planting trees and achieve the best results and cost per tree because of that. It is one of the few organizations we found that not only fights climate change but also changes people lives by doing it. They are also 100% transparent concerning the financials of their organization and projects (something which a lot of NPO’s are not). Finally, they are very climate ambitious and fully support campaigns like these.
To offset the fact that working with a USA organization might be not 100% transparent for European climate activists we will be joining the super new Belgian NPO Promobutler Infinity Foundation. This foundation’s main goal is to convince as many companies as possible to join the ‘trees per product/contract’ model and will form a strong basis to continue our climate effort after this campaign. The joined effort will allow for a larger scale so that we can do proper follow up on the projects funded with this campaign. This Belgian foundation is currently also partnering with Trees For The Future.
Because planting trees there has so many positive side-effects apart from the climate. The soil will become fertile again, farmers will have an increased income, children will be able to go to school and so on. These are effects we simply don’t see when planting trees in for example Europe or North-America. Because of the aligned goals of the farmer and the tree planting organization, we are also sure that the trees will survive for many years to come. Apart from that, planting trees in Western countries is 10-40 times more expensive and we will always choose for the largest impact for the money donated. Finally, because of the warm climate of those countries, the trees will grow much faster and suck up a lot more C02!
That’s correct! And we don’t think that should be an issue. To make it clear, all donations will go integrally to projects of the nonprofit organization Trees For The Future!
We are a firm believer in the ‘happy profit’ concept. It’s a concept that says that companies can make a profit, as long as the company makes the world a better place. We try to apply this by planting trees and handcrafting all our products in a Belgian social workplace. Of course, we will get some advertising on the side because of this campaign but if that helps us to continue making the world a better place, that shouldn’t be an issue right?
Only if we all work together, this concerns individuals, companies and governments, only then we will be able to save the climate quickly and on time.