Sep 09.12

Charity Pot: Handmade with Love

LUSH gives 100% of sales of Charity Pot to small grassroots organizations working in the areas of animal welfare, environmental conservation, and human rights. 

Recently, the LUSH Charitable Givings team invited Leslie Fox and Andrea Assaly from The Association for the Protection of Fur-Bearing Animals (APFA), one of our Charity Pot partners, to our factory in Vancouver to roll up their sleeves, put on a hair net and give us a hand making our beloved Charity Pot hand and body lotion. After having made a fresh batch of Charity Pot, we asked Leslie, the Executive Director of APFA, about her experience with LUSH and what it was like to get into one of our kitchens.

What inspired you to visit us in the LUSH factory and try your hand at making Charity Pot hand & body lotion?
The Association for the Protection of Fur-Bearing Animals (a.k.a. Fur-Bearer Defenders or APFA) is full of LUSHies. It’s no wonder, as our staff, volunteers and members tend to support companies with who have ethical and sustainable purchasing policies. Plus, LUSH stores are fun, the staff are charismatic and everything they make smells so darn good! It was a dream come true when LUSH accepted our application to be a Charity Pot partner. Through LUSH's Charity Pot program, we were provided funds to support our Fur Trim is A Trap campaign. In addition to the donation, LUSH helped us launch an anti-fur postcard campaign and we even did an in-store demonstration in the front window of the LUSH Toronto store on Queen Street West. It was an amazing experience for all of us and it resulted in much needed awareness of Canada's cruel fur trade.

Out of everything LUSH has done to help our organization, one of the things we value most is our ongoing relationship with the remarkable people that work there. Knowing that LUSH makes Charity Pot right here in Vancouver, we couldn't resist the idea of helping to make some pots for all of the great causes (including ours) that they support.

What was the most surprising part of being in the LUSH factory?
The most surprising part of being in the LUSH factory making Charity Pot, aside from the fact that it really felt like a big kitchen, was all of the natural ingredients that LUSH has on hand. I mean, we knew that LUSH uses natural ingredients, but to see all of it there, REAL ingredients, it was pretty awesome. I watched one guy strain soaked chamomile flowers into a large pot and I got hungry seeing all of the bananas and fresh greens. I also enjoyed how everything had a handmade touch to it. It’s such a large company – an international company - yet every product has a human touch. Every little bell, chocolate chip, sticker or sprinkle of cinnamon was likely put there by hand. What other company does that – and - has happy people doing it? Imagine if the LUSH factory was your neighbor? You could just go next door and ask to borrow a 1/2 of cup of sugar or some kale. And I bet they would give it to you.

Which Charity Pot ingredient did you love working with the most?
This is easy. Cocoa butter. All natural and Fair Trade cocoa butter. In fact, the first step in making LUSH's Charity Pot is to melt blocks of cocoa butter. It smelled so good you wanted to eat it. It was so hard not to lick the fingers of our gloves. Slightly sweet and very rich, cocoa butter is the key ingredient in the Charity Pot that makes your skin so soft and smooth. LUSH sources their organic Fair Trade cocoa butter for Charity Pot from a cooperative called Conocado in the Dominion Republic. The Fair Trade certification means that the people who produced the cocoa butter have safe working conditions and receive a fair wage.

After having made Charity Pot yourself, would you describe it any differently than before?
After making Charity Pot, we can say with complete confidence that LUSH is the real deal. The Charity Pot is a product in its own category. It's not just a great body lotion – it's truly changing the world. We've seen first-hand from start to finish the capacity of one Charity Pot. By just picking up a pot, and slathering yourself with lovely, silky lotion, you're saving animals, cleaning up the environment or helping people who need a hand. You're printing flyers, posting billboards, building schools and speaking out against the fur trade. You're doing it all - with lotion! If you never leave your bathroom, you can still save the world. Activism has never been easier. And who knew activism could smell this good?

 

Lesley Fox is a certified Humane Education Specialist through the National Association for Humane and Environmental Education (NAHEE). Passionate about a variety of social issues, Lesley has been involved in the non-profit sector for over a decade. Her recent achievements include lobbying various municipalities to adopt anti-trapping bylaws and working with the BC Ministry of Education to have animal issues included in school curriculum.

 The Association for the Protection of Fur Bearing Animals (also known as Fur Bearer Defenders) works to end the commercial fur trade by exposing trapping cruelty and through protecting fur-bearing animals in the wild or in confinement. In addition, they provide assistance to municipalities seeking to minimize human-wildlife conflicts.

 

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