In business, there is a bottom line: profit. In nonprofits, there is a double bottom line: profit and social impact. Little known, is a term called the triple-bottom line, which takes into consideration our dear mother earth.
I don’t think you can be called a philanthropist without caring about the earth.
There. I said it. Something somewhat controversial. Typically, the environment brings up political debate and tends to divide us. What I’ve learned about being a philanthropist is we need to focus on what we agree on. Here is what I know we agree on:
- Nature is beautiful – we love to explore and wanderlust.
- Nature is healing – it’s emotionally and physically proven.
- We need the earth to survive.
I’m not saying you need to believe in climate change. I’m not even saying you need to recycle. Let’s not even talk about those debatable details.
Let’s talk about how humans are the only caretakers of the earth. And, therefore, what we must also balance in our individual daily life is that special responsibility we each have to making and maintaining our one planet we can (currently) live on as beautiful as it can be.
For my four year old son, picking up trash at the playground creates joy for him. Like a child, we each innately love to see the beauty in our every day lives. Some people enjoy designing their home, making fashion choices, photography, or even a love of numbers. We all have those things that we enjoy doing and is effortless to do.
When I look at the trees, the sky, the lake, the animals, I experience joy. There’s nothing like the natural elements. Yet, sometimes I feel powerless to help the earth. There’s so much going on in the world that I can’t control. I tend to focus on social responsibility and my preference for treating all people with dignity. However, I’m going to need to think through what more I can be doing for our environment.
How do we miss that without a clean and healthy environment humans can’t live? It wasn’t until I went back to school that I realized the environment really needs to be number one on my list, because without it we truly have nothing.
What comes to mind when I ask you how you want to better support the earth? Do you, like me, fear that my small environmental contributions don’t matter?
We are stronger together and what we do has ripple effects.
I’m going to commit to using paper bags to collect garbage in my house. What do you think of that? Is that good enough? Let me get that nailed down first, and then start on something else. Just take this one bite right now—start with a small step.
I want to see the earth more beautiful.
Will you join me to do just one thing that creates joy and passion within you to help support our planet?