Just Livity means to be one with world. As a sustainable social enterprise, we embody an eco conscious yoga practice. Here, the products reflect good values, and serve social and environmental projects globally. But what happens when there are no products? This year we found our answer. We ignited action with a COVID fundraiser, and a habitat preservation project.
A Social Enterprise Seed
This year began with high aspirations to make a difference. We were a budding social enterprise seed. The plan, a quick Livity Yoga launch that was two fold. One, debut our eco friendly yoga mat to the world. Two, jumpstart our involvement with 1% for the Planet. As the story of the year goes, due to the pandemic, plans changed.
Restrictions placed on global trade, halted our production timeline. This inspired creative problem solving of our brand mission. Despite our lack of products, we were able to make real change through collaboration. Read on about the work we did with Conscious Alliance and the Anacostia Watershed Society
Food For Families Fundraiser with Conscious Alliance
The minute New York went into shutdown there was a wave of panic along the east coast. Being located in Maryland, it was like waiting for dominos to fall. As the situation worsened our distress signal transformed into a humanitarian calling.
I saw facebook posts from a New York City school teacher, about schools in New York still open during the onset of COVID. They had to figure out how to feed kids who only get their meals from school. – Renee Manzari CEO Livity Yoga
Low income families were hit the hardest. With wage and job cuts, the mamas and papas couldn’t make ends meet. Kids were out of school and food needs spiked. People were sacrificing meals to make rent, pay bills, and buy medicine.
Conscious Alliance: Art That Feeds
As a 1% for the Planet member, we were able it easily connect with Conscious Alliance. Under normal circumstances Conscious Alliance runs on donations from entertainment partners. They work with major musicians, to run food drives at concerts. They also receive a percentage of ticket and merchandise sales. However, live music tanked this year, so their donations came in from large corporations, food companies and restaurants. This was the link in our chain to get meals to people in need.
Already a well established food distribution platform, with an intricate national network. 24/7 they are compiling food donations, and delivering to people across America. This year pushed them to fulfill food bank over flow. Best of all, they provide school lunches for 40 schools in the U.S. Their work demands consistent funding.
So the Food For Families Fundraiser ran all summer. With your support we donated a total of $3000 to Conscious Alliance. This supplemented 136 meals for families across the nation. A portion of our donations came from people who bought our Harmony Tees. Additionally, we donated 100 t-shirts to Conscious Alliance for a large donor auction.
Earth Day Anacostia Water Shed Clean-up
The biggest area of focus for our social enterprise is the environment. Livity cork yoga products take inspiration and materials directly from the earth. It is only right to treasure our maker. What better way to show appreciation, than to preserve our backyard.
Maryland is home to the beautiful Anacostia Watershed. It is a vast stretch of area that follows the Anacostia River out to the Chesapeake Bay. The coastal waterway is home to 522 unique species. Not to mention storied tales of America’s native people. Each year this habitat faces pressure from over development and runoff pollution. So much, it has earned the nickname as Washington D.C.’s “forgotten river.”
When native indigenous people are removed from their land, mass murdered, gentrified, and eliminated, the elders and shamans of the tribe would use ritual to assign missions to certain spirits. To represent what was lost, to hold up their legacy and remember. I am the manifestation of some of those rituals. – Jason Anderson descendant of the original Anacostia people, the Nacochtank Tribe
With natural wetlands dwindling, the health of this precious ecosystem is at stake. However not all is lost thanks to the Anacostia Watershed Society. By 2025, they set out to achieve a fishable and swimmable river. To do this they enlist community support on projects like the Earth Day Cleanup. This helps alleviate trash congestion.
Do it for the Rivers
Livity Yoga volunteered time to care for the sacred land. The event was meant for Earth Day. Due to COVID restrictions it was postponed to October 3rd. We raked the shorelines of trash. For the morning we cleansed remnants of the past, in a solid effort to usher in a clean future. This massive cleanup helps conservationists more easily combat the untreated sewage and runoff issues. Ultimately leading to a thriving home for people AND wildlife in Maryland.