Aligning Long-Term Charitable Work With A Capitalistic System


May 25, 2021
Last Updated
Imagine you could save our planet just by drinking a coffee. Or by eating sushi. Or by giving somebody a birthday present. How cool would that be?

That’s Charitalism. It’s the art of combining charitable work with a capitalistic system. Put simply, it means that you help to save our planet without doing anything you don’t already do.

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Sounds too good to be true? Trust us – it isn’t. In fact, Charitalism is already common in many different parts of your everyday life.

Here’s what you can do today to make Charitalism our global reality (and it’s much, much simpler than you think.)

What Is Charitalism?

Let’s get straight to it! In its most simple form, Charitalism combines the best features of the capitalistic system with the sustainable ethos of charitable work to give our planet a future.

You may have already spotted that Charitalism is a portmanteau word: combining the words Charity and Capitalism makes Charitalism. 

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Charitalism makes a capitalistic lifestyle much more sustainable without changing much at all. There are no billion-dollar pledges, no petitions, and no demands for you to abandon your current lifestyle. 

Instead, you’ll help save our planet just by continuing to do the same things you already do every single day. And right now, Mother Earth needs our help – more than ever before.

So here’s an example. You’ll purchase some sushi for lunch – the same way you do right now. The only difference is that the company you’ve always purchased sushi from (such as I Love Sushi) will already have an agreement with us to plant a tree every time they sell one specific sushi roll.

The more sales they make, the more trees get planted. It’s Capitalism combined with Charitable work.

This means that there’s consistent funding for sustainable companies around the world planting trees, saving animals, cleaning up our environment, and trying to make the world a better place.

You’ll buy a coffee, take a bus ride, or even book a weekend getaway, and you’ll still be making the planet a better place. And just by purchasing from companies that use parts of their revenue to do good.

If you actively purchase from these engaged companies, then they earn higher revenues, and everybody wins.

Why Does Charitalism Need To Become Our New Norm?

So why all the fuss? Why do we need Charitalism?

Well, for a start, it seems that the majority of people don’t want to return to the way things were pre-pandemic. In the United Kingdom, just 6% of the public ‘want a return to the pre-pandemic economy.’

Scientists also published a report which declares that we have as little as 10 years left to save the world from irreparable damage. We told you in The Twentrees that this decade is our last chance to save our planet.

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We already know that we can’t continue like this: something has to change. And now is the perfect time to make a change.

We need a solution that improves the capitalistic system and aligns it with long-term, sustainable, charitable work. We need businesses to make money while they practice sustainability. Both elements need to work together.

When we implement that solution, everybody will benefit.

And that solution is Charitalism.

How Will It Help?

The first thing Charitalism will improve is the funding of charitable work. Currently, charitable work doesn’t receive consistent backing. Short-term, one-off donations make it a challenge to implement a long-term strategy and plan for the future. 

Charitalism changes that: instead of funding a project for one year, Charitalism will fund one for 10 years. Or perhaps even more than that.

How much more effective will charitable work be with the guarantee of long-term backing? 

Simultaneously, Charitalism improves the capitalist system, making sustainability highly attractive for businesses.

And, when businesses routinely support charitable work, that charitable work will also become financially profitable. Everybody (and everything) on our planet wins.

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Sustainable work will no longer rely on volunteers, ask for donations, or pay minimum wage to people who devote their lives to incredible causes. 

And all the while, businesses will attract green customers and continue to drive profits. But, crucially, they’ll be doing so while continually funding the protection of our planet. 

Why would you not want Charitalism to become our everyday norm? 

The Biggest Challenges Facing Charitalism

Charlitalism looks so easy on paper, doesn’t it? However, there are some hurdles we need to overcome first. 

When you plant trees with Click A Tree, you already have a way to begin overcoming these hurdles.

Challenges Facing Capitalism

Sustainability Isn’t Profitable

Typically, capitalist companies pursue maximum profit. With that being the focus, it can be easy to lose sight of sustainable engagement. Sometimes, sustainable commitments drop to the bottom of the priority list because they’re not seen as being profitable. And we need to change that perception.

At Click A Tree, we fully understand the challenge of balancing profits with sustainability. No business in the world succeeds with high operating costs and non-existent profits.

Charitalism marries long-term sustainable commitments with profit. There’s no sacrifice. Your business will drive profits simply by supporting charitable work. See the proof of that with I Love Sushi’s Case Study.

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And when each of us recognizes this sustainable practice as a way to increase profit while also protecting our environment, everybody wins. Yes, that includes you and me.

Profit Over Planet

So we already know that capitalism encourages corporations to buy from the cheapest providers and sell with the highest possible profit. And, currently, the cheapest provider of goods rarely uses sustainable practice. 

We’ve seen countless examples of jungles being deforested to make use of the nutritious soils. Mono-cultures are created instead of natural, varied ones – it’s cheaper and more efficient in the short-term. 

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With Charitalism, we’ll make it easier for corporations to support biodiversity and its long-term impact. We’ll make the cheapest providers of goods more sustainable by building healthy and diverse ecosystems that will continue to thrive long after we’re gone.

The Biggest Challenges Facing Charitable Work

Lack of Reliable Funding

The biggest challenge with charitable work is the lack of reliable funding. Instead of planning projects with a consistent and measured approach, charitable organizations have to work with sporadic, one-off donations.

This hinders long-term development. It’s impossible to plan a project’s full life-cycle and, even worse, a sustainable project may begin only to have its budget slashed when donations don’t appear as anticipated.

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With regular backing, charitable organizations will have more room for overheads, staff salaries, and business development. They can put a foundation in place and plan for the long-term. 

A Voluntary Workforce

Since there’s rarely any leftover budget for a local workforce, volunteers often make up the numbers. Voluntary efforts such as planting trees, digging wells, and educating children in developing nations are awesome! They’re extremely valuable and selfless acts of kindness. But unfortunately, they don’t last.

Volunteers come, volunteers go. They leave behind a new school in a developing village (which, again, is amazing!) but they don’t leave behind a long-term plan or an experienced workforce. 

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Charitalism makes it possible to employ locals and reward them with a fair salary. There’s long-term development, local experience and expertise, and investment in the community.

Unhelpful Stereotypes

Finally, we’re also stuck with an extremely unhelpful stigma where society believes that the only way to do sustainable work is to do so voluntarily. If we want to make a difference, the common belief is that it should be voluntary, or at least funded by donations, like a gap year. Sometimes, people are even happy to pay to do voluntary work!

This common conception is deeply flawed, and only furthers the current short-termism of charitable work.

With consistent backing and long-term planning, charitable work will become profitable and will require a permanent workforce. We’ll be able to reward sustainable work with a respectable salary.

And when we do, everyone within the capitalist system will be inspired to help save the planet. Workers will be able to build a career doing something meaningful, and we’ll get rid of this unhelpful stereotype.

How Do We Make Charitalism Our Reality?

Thankfully, to make Charitalism our reality we don’t need to rip up the system and start again – we just need to ‘update’ it a little bit. Like a smartphone update. Like an update that’s going to save our planet while driving your profits at the same time. 

At Click A Tree, we help charitable companies all over the world, and we also understand the bigger picture with donations and keeping costs low – same as you. That’s why we designed Charitalism to be business-friendly and realistic.

Related: The 4-Win Formula: How Everyone Benefits from a Partnership with Click A Tree

Embracing Charitalism For Businesses

When you plant trees with us, you’re joining a co-operation of ambitious, growth-driven, and economically-mindful businesses. Importantly, we all value sustainability. 

And more and more, this is what consumers consider before they finalize any purchase.

Coleman Parks Research (on behalf of Accenture) found that 47% of surveyed consumers only want to do business with retailers that are environmentally conscious.

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So with our help, you’ll become a more sustainable business. You’ll retain your eco-conscious customers, and you’ll attract the interest of so many more shoppers with social values. They won’t go to competitors because they know that you care about the planet.

All you have to do is incorporate the costs of your sustainable commitment into your business expenditures.

Crucially, you’re also helping to set-up a long-term partnership, which has long-term benefits for the communities at our tree-planting sites. And, since the partnership is long-term, your profits and eco-status will be as well.

Flexible Solutions For Businesses

What’s more is that you can plant trees with us in whichever way you like. We can plant trees for every product you sell, or for every new client you get, for every target you reach, or every success story you generate. 

If you’re a business owner, then you’ll increase your sales and drive profits with Charitalism. You can’t lose. The possibilities are endless, and we’re excellent at tailoring a solution that fits your needs and goals.

That’s because trees will only be planted based on your business success. Take a look at I Love Sushi – they only plant a tree for every sold tree roll. This means that if no tree rolls are sold, they don’t have to cover the costs of planting any new trees.

But thanks to planting trees, their tree roll sales have increased by 22% in the first quarter of 2020 – despite the Corona challenges!

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The same goes for our agreement with Koncept Hotels. We plant a tree for every direct booking they receive: when there’s no direct booking, there’s no obligation to plant a tree.

And, again, their direct bookings have consistently increased since we made the agreement (up until the Corona pandemic, since it stopped all forms of travel).

If you want to become more financially profitable while making a difference in the world, then we want to speak with you! Get in touch with our friendly team right now – we’re happy to help you get involved with Charitalism.

Related Article: 3 ways to cut costs while building a sustainable business.

Embracing Charitalism For Consumers

But if you’re not a business owner, then don’t worry – you still have a role to play. The most important thing you can do is choose where you spend your money wisely. Choose companies that plant trees, clean the oceans, and protect our planet.

You can start by checking the list of businesses that plant trees with B’n’Tree. When you purchase something with them, you know that we’ve planted a tree just for you.

And there are plenty of other ways to shop with ethical companies. Take a look at 11 easy ways that you can plant trees for free below. Just by sending emails or browsing the internet with certain companies, you can plant more trees.

If, however, some of your favorite brands aren’t doing anything sustainable yet, then get in touch with them! Actively encourage them to invest in Charitalism. Talk to them. Send them a Tweet. Call them. Get them to talk to us and find out what solutions we can offer!

You’re a valued client, and they want to keep you happy – you have the power to make a difference.

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Related Article: 11 Truly Meaningful New Year’s Resolutions 2021 [+ Action Plan]

Charitalism With Click A Tree

Charitalism sounds simple, right? Too simple to miss out on. So if you manage a business that would like to get involved (and you absolutely should), then get in touch and we’ll show you how easy it is.

We all have a part to play in making Charitalism our reality. 

Our vision is for every single business to become a charitalistic one. And when that happens each of our simple, everyday actions will go a very long way. 

At Click A Tree we pay everybody in our value chain a fair salary. This is especially important for the people working on site, where our diligent tree-planters usually earn above the average local salary.

We hope this inspires other people in the area to start planting trees.

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And we hope today’s post inspires you to contact us about your Charitalism options. Let’s make it happen today!

Contact our team to discuss how we can plant trees for you. Share our Charitalism stories on your Instagram profile, and join our discussion about the benefits of Charitalism on Facebook.

Do you agree that Charitalism is the ultimate sustainable solution? What does a charitalistic world look like to you? And how are you going to get involved today?

Drop a comment below and let us know what you think.

Thank you for the trees you’ve already planted, for the trees you’ll help us plant in the future, and for all the incredible things you’re doing to help save our planet! You’re the best!

Until next time

Your Click A Tree team

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