8 Companies That Prioritize Community Connections for a More Just and Inclusive Economy
These 2022 Best for the World B Corps for community show how partnering with local organizations and working directly with suppliers can amplify impact and build resilient connections. These companies share how they are making business decisions that incorporate the community as a valued stakeholder.
A stakeholder economy is a new economic system where business decisions benefit all people and the planet. A stakeholder economy empowers business leaders to make decisions that consider the impact they have on stakeholders equally with the financial value they create. To earn Best for the World recognition, B Corps must score in the top 5% in their corresponding size group in one of the five impact areas evaluated on the B Impact Assessment: community, customers, environment, governance, and workers. Best For The World companies are exemplifying ways to bring a stakeholder economy to life.
The Best for the World B Corps for community enhance their contributions to local economies and societies and provide examples of how the stakeholder economy can include broader communities. From educational networking programs to donated meals for frontline workers to job-training outreach, the eight B Corps in the U.S. and Canada highlighted here are making a positive impact on their communities and building a shared and sustainable prosperity for all.
BIO RAW provides healthy and sustainably sourced food subscriptions to the customer’s door. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the company donated thousands of meals to local hospitals and care centers, helping to feed frontline health workers. The B Corp continues to participate in community events and offer help to anyone who asks, and donates a percentage of profits to local and international agencies that are dedicated to making social change.
With a belief in being present in its community and willing to help others, BIO RAW aims to nourish connections and deepen its mission to educate and empower customers with healthy food options.
As a branding and marketing firm that focuses on breathing life into mission-driven companies, Creative Chi embraces the opportunity to encourage caring in its community. The B Corp worked with Florida for Good to launch Impact Mission Miami, a networking and education organization that brings together businesses for collaboration and positive social and environmental impact.
Creative Chi’s other community initiatives include providing pro bono work for the Seaworthy Collective Foundation, donating 1% of revenue to local nonprofits as part of 1% for the Planet, and volunteering as B Corp mentors with students and entrepreneurs.
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In a time when many businesses were posting black squares on Instagram, Measure Meant Founder Kara Odegard wondered how the social impact consulting firm could do something meaningful to support racial justice. She reached out to the Carl Maxey Center, a Black-focused community center, and learned that capacity was an ongoing issue. Measure Meant has since funded a part-time position to help the center increase the impact of its work through a collaborative arrangement.
With a commitment to donating at least 5% of annual revenue to nonprofits, beyond its requirement as a 1% for the Planet member, Measure Meant demonstrates its commitment to local organizations and lives its mission as a social impact consulting firm.
Women-owned, Impact Business Model
Organic India has created a transparent and integrated supply chain for its teas, supplements, and other products by working directly with farmers in India’s Uttar Pradesh region and providing Fair Trade premiums, upfront payment, and capacity building in organic and regenerative farming techniques. These benefits and services allow for greater economic opportunity and mobility as well as income stability.
Sharing resources, industry insight, and best practices is a priority for Organic India, which is working to scale farmer partnerships and replicate its supply chain model with India farmers in the U.S and beyond. The B Corp plans to open a cafe this fall in its hometown of Boulder, Colorado, that will include a community space for events, speakers, and impact organizations.
Women-owned, Impact Business Model
As a partner with Ellilta Women at Risk, Parker Clay ensures that each purchase of its premium leather bags and accessories helps aid in the fight against exploitation of women in Ethiopia. The B Corp goes beyond the traditional charity model and provides essential skills training and job opportunities to help women in these affected areas gain independence. The training program now has more than 1,000 graduates, with more than 90% remaining free from prostitution.
Parker Clay has developed methodologies to create a trade model that incorporates living wages, safe workplaces, and educational opportunities for socioeconomic transformation. All employees have access to skills training and career advancement and financial literacy opportunities.
Stakeholder Capitalism: The Systemic Change Our Economy Needs
A new impact economy is being built, one where businesses prioritize and consider their impact on all the stakeholders they impact — including communities, workers, customers, and the environment. This free report shares how the stakeholder model as practiced by B Corps is gaining global traction and validation.
In pursuing its mission to support creative work in public schools, Public Supply believes that creativity helps students become more engaged in the classroom, at home, and in the world. As budget cuts threaten creative arts programs, the B Corp works to provide materials where they’re needed and bring together a community of creative thinkers by donating 25% of annual profits directly to public school classrooms and teachers.
By creating a community-focused program that incorporates its mission as a creator of writing products, Public Supply has been able to deepen its commitment and build connections with others who value creative arts and public schools.
Rumi Spice is a company that provides high-quality, ethically sourced spices from Afghanistan. By operating with a direct supply chain, Rumi Spice partners with farmers in Afghanistan to provide fair wages and economic stability and obtain ingredients for its spices. On a broader scale, the B Corp aims to build demand for Afghan agricultural products and benefit more farmers.
By rethinking its supply chain to eliminate unnecessary layers and source additional products to benefit suppliers, Rumi Spice demonstrates how businesses can rethink traditional models for positive social and environmental impact.
As a part of the fashion industry known for its negative climate impact, tentree instead aims to benefit the environment and the communities where its customers live by planting 10 trees for each apparel item sold. The B Corp works with community planting partners to support agroforestry for food security, mangroves restoration for climate resilience, and reforestation of wildfire sites across Canada and the U.S.
To verify tree-planting activities and quantify their impact, tentree created a sister company, veritree, and offers an impact wallet tool so customers can see the impact of their purchases on the environment.
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