Some of my most cherished childhood memories are the weekend walks taken with my dad, in the Boys Club Woods. It was 70 acres of woods deeded to the Boys Club of America, and it was right across the road from our house. Most every weekend in the late afternoon, my father would take his children and our dog for a walk in the woods. He’d point out the birds, the different trees, how to read the tree rings, and the bark. He would tell us about the granite rocks and the ice ages. Our walks always took us to the pond, where we’d watch the fish, and the frogs, learn about snapping turtles and salamanders. In the winter we would ice skate on the pond, listen to the crack of ice during a thaw, and identify animal tracks in the snow.
My father had a deep appreciation and passion for the natural world. He cherished the national parks, and the truly wild places that were only accessible on horseback or on foot. He was a conservationist before it became popular. He was a man of action; he used to say to us, if we complained about a problem, “Stop yakking and start doing!”
The environment, our planet, and our natural world face serious problems: the catastrophic effects of waste, where plastics in landfills, rivers, and oceans that take over 450 years to degrade; loss of habitat for birds, pollinators and predators; chemical cocktails spread over the soil and into our food.
In truth, there have been days where I have been totally overwhelmed by the hurdles, complaining bitterly and loudly…
And then recently I realized: I have been yakking too long, Dad.
Taking the leap…
So I went in search of solutions, answers to the environmental challenges that are overwhelming…and do you know what I found? There are artists, innovators, and small companies all over the world that are actually finding creative solutions to the immense environmental impacts on Mother Earth—our home. Some of these companies are so small we don’t hear of them. Some of the artists are regional and therefore unknown beyond the boundaries of their home state.
BioStar is now taking action by launching a new online company called Seeds for Kindness, which represents artists and small companies from around the world who provide products that are recycled, up-cycled, re-purposed, re-imagined, often giving a portion of their profits back to important community projects, environmental charities, animal welfare, and first responders.
In turn, Seeds for Kindness will also donate a percentage of all proceeds to environmental charities on a rotating basis—charities such as American Forests, Waterkeeper Alliance, and the Ocean Foundation.
With each product purchase, a customer is not only backing the artist’s or crafter’s mission to improve communities large and small, but also supporting the environmental initiatives chosen by Seeds for Kindness.
Rotating seeds, building community
Seeds for Kindness will operate as a kind of rolling showcase, rotating our highlighted artists and companies regularly so that other small, innovative artists and companies can be featured.
We hope Seeds for Kindness will become a community of seeds—a gathering of consumers, artists, and small companies that together continue a growing and galvanizing force of kindness in the world, empowering more ideas and creativity toward solving our environmental challenges and social equality issues.
The current showcase:
- Handmade jewelry from Alaska and India
- Handmade totes, purses and dopp kits made from decommissioned, up-cycled fire hoses from the U.S. and U.K.
- In BioStar’s neck of the woods, a Virginia artist makes clocks from up-cycled bicycle chains, old movie reels, 45RPM records, and computer motherboards.
- Artists in Kenya turn flip-flops that wash up on beaches into stunning colorful animals: lions, giraffes, turtles and dinosaurs.
- Eco-ethical scarves are available, hand-dyed, printed, sun-dried in India, and sewn by a woman-owned, Washington, DC.
- Let’s not forget our four legged friends! For the cats: re-purposed wool sweaters made into little birds stuffed with organic catnip. For the dogs: collars made from hemp in brilliant geometric designs, handmade in Slovenia.
- Beaded bracelets made in Nepal
- Earrings made from recycled guitar strings, handmade in New Orleans.
- Whimsical reindeer, baby ostrich, crab, elephant, and T-Rex figures, handmade in Kenya from recycled soda cans, telephone and cable wires.
Join the journey
Seeds for Kindness is a journey for me—a giant leap of faith on one hand, and an exciting action on the other. Fortunately, this endeavor has the backing and enthusiasm of the entire BioStar team. Already we’ve experienced the seeds of community, reaching out to artists and small companies who have embraced our mission because it is their mission too.
I think when you see the innovation, the beauty, the creativity that is happening in the US and around the globe—people coming together to solve environmental challenges and spread more kindness and light in the world—you will want to take the journey too.
To keep up with rotating products and watch the sprouting seeds:
- Visit the Seeds for Kindness website: www.SeedsforKindness.com
- Follow Seeds for Kindness on Facebook: www.Facebook.com/SeedsforKindness
- Follow Seeds for Kindness on Instagram: www.Instagram.com/seeds_for_kindness
- Sign up for monthly newsletters