Women Business Owners Making a Difference

A look at how five entrepreneurs are giving back and helping others

A look at how five entrepreneurs are giving back and helping others

By Sheryl Nance-Nash

When it comes to making an impact, women entrepreneurs are leading the charge. Nurturers by nature and multitasking pros, women CEOs are using their influence and cash to show their support for social change. You don’t need deep pockets to create a better world.

Here are four entrepreneurs who are proving that small businesses have the power to inspire lasting change.

Dalia MacPhee
Business: Dalia MacPhee Fashion Brand
City: Los Angeles
What The Business Does: Dalia MacPhee is an international clothing brand distributed in department stores and specialty boutiques across the world.
Social Impact: MacPhee has been involved in several charities over the years, including Women for Women International and the Cinderella Project. In one charitable campaign, MacPhee donated gowns to cancer patients to allow them to walk Hollywood’s Red Carpet during awards shows.
Advice on Growing a Socially-Conscious Business: “Pick something that really matters to you. It doesn’t have to be popular, it doesn’t have to fit the mold; the only thing that matters is that it’s enacting some sort of positive change in the world and that you are passionate about it.”

Reem Rahim
Business: Numi Organic Tea
City: Oakland
What The Business Does: Provider of premium teas.
Social Impact: Together for H2OPE, a nonprofit initiative run by the Numi Foundation, provides access to clean water to the company’s farming partners across the world. In 2016, the first Together for H2OPE campaign was born, starting in a farming community along the Rianila River of Madagascar where their turmeric teas are sourced. Numi is now expanding Together for H2OPE to their black tea farmers in India, their rooibos farmers in South Africa and their chamomile and mint growers in Egypt, intending to reach 50,000 people in farming communities over the next five years.
Advice on Growing a Socially-Conscious Business: Being in Madagascar and witnessing people’s lives completely transformed by clean water, something we take for granted, resonates with my own experiences and serves as a reminder of how we can help one another.”

Yvonne Niami
Business: VIVA XXXII Tequila
City: Los Angeles
What The Business Does: Sells distilled spirits, two varietals of tequila.
Social Impact: They donate 10 percent of net proceeds to help fight animal abuse, supporting organizations like the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) and the Los Angeles-based animal shelter SPCALA.
Advice on Growing a Socially-Conscious Business: “We are proud to sell an amazing tequila, but to be able to help animals in need through it is just the best part. All companies should have some kind of Give Back policy. Whether it’s to animals, children, veterans, people suffering from disabilities—whatever is close to you, give to those causes. When you give and help others, you live a much more fulfilling life.”

Shauna Martin
Business: Daily Greens
City: Austin, Texas
What The Business Does:  Daily Greens is a cold-pressed green juice company.
Social Impact: Shauna Martin is a breast cancer survivor who started juicing green veggies during her recovery from chemotherapy and multiple surgeries. She now seeks to share the benefits of nutrient-dense greens with others through Daily Greens. To help fellow survivors, Daily Greens has a partnership with Young Survival Coalition, providing them with funding for their programs, which give support and resources to young women battling breast cancer.
Advice on Growing a Socially-Conscious Business: “Don’t wait until your business is a huge success to start paying it forward. Instead, build your business from day one, with core values that layout your business’s unique ability to address a social concern/issue/dilemma. As entrepreneurs, we are very creative, so when our hearts are in the right place, we are uniquely situated to help solve some of the biggest social and environmental problems of our time.”

Teana McDonald
Business:  3E Connections, Inc.
City:  Coral Springs, Florida
What The Business Does: Full-service marketing company that helps clients tell and share their stories through social media, public relations, graphic design, and event marketing.
Social Impact:  McDonald decided several years ago to provide free services to one local charity. She chose the Lisa Boccard Breast Cancer Fund because 100 percent of the funds raised go directly to the women in need. 3E Connections helps this organization manage their social media platforms, create press releases, and they pitch the organization to the media to help promote their local events.
Advice on Growing a Socially-Conscious Business: “If you can’t physically volunteer then find a way to donate your time through the services you offer. Find a cause that means something to you and form a partnership. Think about the legacy you want your company to have. Philanthropy should always be part of the business plan.”

There is nothing like charting your own course as a business owner. When you find a way to give back, you see first-hand how powerful entrepreneurship can be.

Sheryl Nance-Nash is a seasoned journalist who has written about personal finance, small business and career-related topics for more than a decade.

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