By Sara Mack Communications Intern at Bootstrap Compost, Inc.
Ever since its inception, Bootstrap has worked hard to make giving back to the community a priority. After all, transforming food waste into a usable compost product is already a huge community service, so we might as well go the extra mile to make our corner of the world a better place.
In order to (literally) put our money where our mouths are on this, our very own Community Outreach Team (fondly known as COT) is working hard to spread the love through contributions like worm bins, compost donations, free pick ups, and cold hard cash every month to organizations that are also fighting to make our communities, and the world, a little better. All things said and done, we allocate up to $1,000 in in-kind services or money allocated to different community organizations each month. This initiative is a profound source of pride for the company’s owners, Andy and Igor, and indeed, for the entire Bootstrap staff.
Meanwhile, our donations for the month of January consisted of a variety of all of the aforementioned items. Specifically, we donated a thriving worm bin to a FoodCorps service member, as well as two worm workshops to another FoodCorps school. At the end of these workshops, the students were even able to pick worms to add to their very own classroom worm bin.
As far as monetary contributions go, we were thrilled to connect to two organizations aligned with the arts in the Greater Boston Area. The first of these organizations, The Dorchester Art Project, is dedicated to serving local artists by providing accessible performance venues, regularly scheduled events, and work spaces that facilitate community-building in the Fields Corner neighborhood of Dorchester. Similarly, our second partner, Artists for Humanity, focuses on providing art and design resources to under-resourced young people. With a mission to provide local young people with financial backing to create art, we love what they do. We fully resonate with and support both of these organizations, and are excited to support them as part of our January COT allotment.
Although neither The Dorchester Art Project nor Artists for Humanity are outwardly affiliated with compost, they’re both all in on the community-building front. Even so, it’s easy to wonder why we hand pick organizations that aren’t outwardly “aligned” with compost or environmentalism to donate to. Essentially, we believe that composting, reducing food waste, and environmentalism in general, are initiatives that are designed to benefit everyone regardless of socioeconomic status, and designed to make the world a better place. For this reason, we feel good about allocating our donations to like-minded companies focused on just that — making our corner of the earth a little brighter.
Sometimes, donation programs like ours can be categorized as corporate social responsibility. Although in some ways this is true (we love that we continue to surprise people with our gifts), we view our COT program as a way to give back because it is what WE believe in, not because we feel that we need to do it in order to impress anyone or to keep our customers coming back. (Our quality service — we think, anyways! — already does that.)
At the end of the day, we love what we do and we are happy to share the love with fellow groups doing their fair share to change things for the better. If all of this talk of donations has you brainstorming all of your favorite, deserving organizations, give us some tips! If you would like to nominate an organization close to your heart, let us know — we are always looking for new, community-building partners.