Spotlight on Startups

Everyday Goods Doing Good

Note: Article originally published on Poached Mag.

For those of you who beat yourselves up and/or go through a guilt trip everything you impulsively “bought something from that online shop again”, it seems like a solution is near.

Say hello to The Union Co.

The Union Co., or UCo. (so hip) for short, launched early March this year and carries only products with a social mission: each item comes with its unique story, and supports a good cause somewhere around the world, from supporting education and job creation, to fighting homelessness. With a catchy tagline that reads, “Everyday goods, doing good”, we can’t help but jump on the bandwagon.

Most of us assume that products with a social mission automatically equate to mediocre items at premium prices, just because there are “powerful stories” behind these products. What if we told you that that isn’t the case at all, that you can get accessories that look this precious and make a contribution towards clearing land littered with bombs at the same time?

Not only refashioned out of former bombs in Laos, but also supports bomb-clearing efforts.

If accessories don’t excite you i.e. you’re a guy, there are also watches that support cancer research, clean water, and hunger, or even condoms that fight AIDS in Haiti. In essence, whatever product class you’re looking at, it’s likely that UCo. carries it – all the more reason for you to, ahem, do some shopping and give a little back to society while you’re at it.

We had the chance to catch up with Mitch Ahlenius, one of the co-founders of UCo. over email, and discovered that he, at the mere age of 22, has already checked off spending time abroad in South Africa where he got to sit down with farmers, businesspeople, and founders of nonprofits to come up with structured solutions to address the various issues surrounding poverty. What are/were we all doing at 22? It sure gives us a thing or two to think about.

Image Credits: The Union Co

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