9 Campaigns Inspiring Immediate Change for People, Wildlife, and the Outdoors

10 Campaigns That Inspire Positive Change for People and the Outdoors in 2018

There is no shortage of corporate social responsibility (CSR) within the outdoor industry. Consumers and enthusiasts continually express their concerns for the environment and society (reflecting their core values), and companies continue to listen. And respond. 

The outdoor industry is a steward for responsible manufacturing and consumer behavior. Within the sector, companies provide purpose and meaning to customers, beyond the physical product. People receive gratification from supporting a company that funds sustainability programs or unrestricted access to the outdoors.

CSR continues to be a differentiator for consumers – a factor influencing positive perception among brand loyalists. A recent study conducted by CONE Communications found that Americans expect companies to address divisive issues and create change for environmental and social factors. Most impressive, this survey concluded that 76% of respondents claimed they would refuse to purchase a product if the brand/company didn’t support their beliefs:

“Seven-in-10 Americans believe companies should take actions to improve issues that may not be relevant to everyday business operations.”  

Again, the transparency between companies and consumers within the outdoor industry allows us to make sense of and relate to these statistical findings. And in doing so, we can identify the brands that are commonly associated with CSR: Patagonia, REI, MEC, Black Diamond, and The North Face, to name a handful. 

The outdoor industry is home to purpose-driven companies that “walk the talk.” I’d also argue that they are experts at promoting their CSR efforts and crafting award-winning campaigns. If I say the word “Patagonia,” what comes to mind? Most likely, you think of the iconic outdoor brand currently taking “the fight” to the American government over public lands; the southernmost stretch of South America joining Argentina and Chile didn’t even come to mind.

The projects and campaigns created by Patagonia and REI change the status quo across other, non-related industries. Black Friday is the perfect example.

Although I support these policy-altering initiatives, I’m aware that hundreds, if not thousands of other companies and organizations, are working tirelessly on similar campaigns and projects. Due to their smaller size, many offer a benefit that doesn’t receive press.

Here are 9 projects that inspire positive change for people, wildlife, and the outdoors. Will you support them?

Pela Case: A Case for the Environment

The makers of plant-based, recycled plastic phone cases didn’t set out to create a mobile-phone accessory business. However, they wanted to build a brand to be proud of, one that: 

  • Reduces the amount of plastic waste created by consumer products
  • Alleviates our dependence on non-renewable fossil fuels and oil-based plastics 
  • Educates people about plant-based, sustainable alternatives that are both functional and beautiful
  • Builds the kind of company our customers would be proud to rally behind

Through their ongoing campaign, Pela created the Pay it Forward Program, a transparent referral opportunity for customers. When you purchase a Pela Case, you receive a unique referral link to share with friends and family. Anytime anyone buys a Pela Case from this link, they donate $3 to a selection of charities partnered with their referral program.

LuminAID: Give Light, Get Light Initiative

Buy a light for yourself, and sponsor a light to be distributed by one of their charitable partners for disaster relief. LuminAID’s relief efforts are focusing on communities affected by hurricanes in the Caribbean. 1.6 billion people around the world lack proper access to electricity. Many of these people are forced to rely upon dangerous, toxic, and expensive kerosene lanterns as their primary source of light. 

“Through our Give Light, Get Light program, we partner with NGOs and non-profits all over the world to distribute LuminAID Lights to individuals who will greatly benefit from a safe, rechargeable light source.”

Animal League: Tour For Life

Tour For Life® is hitting the road! Now in its 18th year, the world’s largest cooperative lifesaving pet adoption event is once again crisscrossing America to help adoptable dogs, cats, puppies, and kittens find loving, responsible homes. Animal League teamed up with shelter and rescue groups in 50 cities and 37 states.

Greenpeace: Protect the Arctic Campaign

In partnership with Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources [CCAMLR] and the EU, Greenpeace is campaigning for a protected sanctuary in international waters around the North Pole as part of a network of protected areas across the Arctic Ocean. The Save The Arctic movement asks world leaders to create a global sanctuary in the uninhabited area around the North Pole and to ban oil drilling and destructive fishing in Arctic waters. Join the movement that is making a difference and show the world that you will stand for the Arctic for as long as it takes.

The American Wild Horse Campaign: #JoinTheBand

The American Wild Horse Campaign (AWHC) is dedicated to preserving American wild horses and burros in viable free-roaming herds for generations to come, as part of our national heritage.

Their goal is to protect America’s wild horses and burros by stopping the federal government’s systematic elimination of these national icons from our public lands. It’s not too late to act to save the mustangs!

Mountain Safety Research: MSR Global Health Initiatives

Many of us are used to the taste of chlorine in our water. In fact, we might not even notice it because it’s been added to our tap for years. But for people in developing countries who are unfamiliar with it, the taste of chlorine is foreign, and can even be frightening. This poses a problem for emergency crews who use chlorine to treat local water supplies following disasters to ensure it’s safe to drink.

“The local people think they’re being poisoned or even given birth control because the water tastes strange to them,” says Scott Youmans, design engineer for MSR & MSR Global Health. “It causes a real tension between the response workers and the communities they’re trying to help.”

The U.S. military turned to MSR, the leader in backcountry water treatment technology, for a device that could remove the chlorine taste before the water is distributed to the local communities in need.

The Zion Forever Project: Visitor Experience Initiative

The fundamental purpose of Zion National Park is to preserve the dramatic geology, including Zion Canyon and the labyrinth of deep Navajo sandstone canyons formed by extraordinary erosion at the margin of the Colorado Plateau; to safeguard the park’s wilderness character and its wild and scenic river values. The Zion Forever Project aims to do this by breaking the overall restoration and conservation challenge down into smaller projects, identifying specific goals that also serve to enhance the visitor experience to the park.

MacGillivray Freeman Films: One World One Ocean Campaign

The One World One Ocean global multi-media campaign wants to change how people think about the ocean. MacGillivray Freeman Films wants to inspire ocean conservation across the globe.

Using the power of film, television, new media, and education, they are building a community that supports ocean education and conservation. They have teamed up with some of the most iconic brands in the world to bring ocean stories to wider audiences than ever — fueling a global ocean awareness campaign uses movies, TV, and digital media to engage millions of people with a vision for a healthy ocean.

Parks Project: Leave it Better Than you Found it Initiative

Parks Project makes apparel and goods that directly fund backlogged projects in the national parks across the U.S. The purchase of each product contributes directly to one of over 30 different conservancies across the USA, providing vital funding for the ongoing care of National Parks. For all that these places give to us, we want to give something back. That’s why they are taking action. It’s pretty simple: a portion of your purchase funds revitalization projects in our parks. A true win-win.

If you enjoyed reading about these projects for good, please let us know. And if you have a project you would like to share with us, please send that over — we’d be happy to share.

The research results used in this article were sourced from a 2017 survey conducted by Cone Communications:

The 2017 Cone Communications CSR Study

Join the Conversation

1 Comment

Leave a comment
Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.