Bands of Courage was conceived in early 2020 just at the outset of COVID. As a family, we began making bracelets at home with designs inspired by critically endangered animals like the Hawksbill Sea Turtle.
The idea was to have fun selling bands at our local market, share stories about the impact of Climate Change on critically endangered animals, and plant trees to combat global warming - so we were doing, not just talking.
What was unexpected was how hard the markets were - putting up the stall early in the morning, serving all day, and carting everything away in the evening. Also unexpected was the reward of being part of a community of creative, hardworking, truly amazing people.
Over the following 18 months we’d pop out of lockdown when markets reopened, talk non-stop about our endangered animals then pop back home for another lockdown to make more bands.
Our passion at markets became infectious. Inspired by our amazing supporters, we took the bold step (for us!) of opening an Instagram account and marketing online in 2021.
The number of trees planted per band quickly grew from 1 to 10 as we better understood what we were doing and extended our range of jewelry.
The day we registered our Instagram account we decided to plant a tree for every follower. Given our bands are handmade, the idea was to plant enough trees to offset the CO2 emissions of people making them. The hope was that as we grew, so would our followers to offset our increasing CO2 emissions. We’ve published these results on Instagram from day 1.
As of June 2022, we’ve planted 20,000 trees. We allocate 230 trees for every person involved with Bands of Courage, full or part time. These trees offset all their CO2 emissions, as well as their equal share of the world’s total CO2 emissions from every plane, train and automobile, every brick and building on the planet. It’s explained in the section called ‘Be Net Zero’.
20,000 trees offset the total global emissions shared between 80 people – so more than enough to offset Bands of Courage’s emissions and those of the 41 people working for her.
When we started Bands of Courage, we sought to use natural materials, like fabric, silicon, and glass. This year (2022), we decided to make charms. We were lucky enough to find a wonderful eco-driven team and they make them by hand using recycled gold and silver.
Our journey is entering a new chapter with the launch of our charms this year. Fingers crossed you love them as much as we do, and together we can help restore one of Nature’s six lungs, the rainforests of Madagascar.
We’ve been blessed to meet so many wonderful people. Thank you very, very much for your support.