Samandhi Pauii: Why are we a business and not a charity?
To being with, we are a business, because we are selling stuff! We are very clear that we can generate far more money (to to give to people in need) selling awesome, cool, high-quality products than we ever will just asking for handouts or charitable donations.
Remember also, that this is not just about raising money for people in need, it's about creating a global movement, to transform how humanity lives life on earth! While the sale of the t-shirts and other products raises money, keep in mind that overall, our plan is to completely transform our global society, from being our current fear-based paradigm, which is destroying the whole planet, to a LOVE-BASED concept, where every man, woman and child on this planet is assured of having the basic things we all need to survive! So bear that in mind...
Our idea of being a business, but with a charity component, is not so unusual. Check out Tom's Shoes; an amazing company that we love and highly support and recommend.
Getting back to charities: we think they're great, and in fact, we shall be partnering with some of the ones we believe to be best. And we definitely support them, and the good men and women who have been working so hard, for so many years, in so many sectors - doing great work and definitely saving lives. It's thanks to so many of these charities that so many people - especially children - have been saved over the years.
One of the difficulties with charities though, is that you are constantly asking for more money; money that is coming from regular, good people, like you and us, taxpayers, typically with families... who are already pretty maxed-out financially as it is. People are amazing, and they want to help and make a difference, but we've all got bills to pay! Families to feed! People usually prefer to make one-time donations, or else get into a monthly plan, but eventually end up having to back out at some point.
Then it gets even more complicated: in order to keep bringing money in, charities need to employ many people to keep soliciting for those donations, on the phone, or door-to-door, or what have you. Those people can't all be volunteers, so now the charities end up essentially losing some of the money they are raising, to provide salaries for the fundraisers. Fair enough, but increasingly, less and less of the money donated actually ends up in the hand of the people who need it most - the people we're all trying to help.
If you look at the statistics of charities, they're doing very well. According to he research we have examined, on average, most charities manage to give 65% of the money they collect to the people in need. Pretty great! Mind you that's an average. We saw other examples saying the amount actually donated is closer to 42.5%. We also learned some really nasty stuff about one charity in particular, where the CEO is making $750,000 per year as a salary. Yeah... that's not cool.
At SamandhiPauii.Love, we are basically a virtual company, with NO infrastructure to speak of, and the absolute barest possible minimum of paid staff (like: none, for the time being!) We are mostly just an online store, who partners with an excellent drop-shipping company. They provide us with reasonably priced products, and are able to pay their staff with the profits they make from us, plus all their many other customers.
Currently at SamandhiPauii.Love we are able to donate 89.99% of monies collected to the people who need it most. Our 'overhead' is 11.11%. (Mostly paying artists for design work.) Pretty Great!! And we are just getting started. We guarantee that, as we are able to generate more funds overall (and as startup costs are cleaned up), the amount we are able to donate or re-invest will continue to increase!
Finally though, here is one of the biggest reasons we didn't want to be a charity: When you are a business, your business is your business, and that's that. To operate as a charity, there are rules and regulations and inevitably you end up with some government guy in a suit telling you what you can and cannot do, how the money has to be spent, sticking their nose up your business.
One of the major issues we wish to address first, is homelessness. Frankly, we believe that homelessness is an issue that is ultimately the government's responsibility. So we are very reluctant to have some government fellow, tell us, how to do the job, that we feel they, should be doing in the first place! Yeah, thanks, we'll just be a business, so we can run our business, and the government can mind their own business. :-)
Now don't get us wrong - we're just being humorous. Clearly the governments of the world have their hands full right now, just trying to hold everything else together. So it's up to us to make it happen. When the people lead, the leaders will follow. Don't worry governments - we got your back. But that's why we're a business and not a charity proper.