Last week I featured Greenwala founder, Rajeev Kapur in my Philanthropy in Five series, and I was impressed with his goals for the site as well as his ideas for helping to push eco consciousness into the mainstream in fun, creative ways. Well, he just rolled out one such endeavor with “Greenwala Contests,” a series of contests designed to actively engage consumers on important causes and environmental issues.
“We implemented this contest platform not just to give away prizes, but to get people to engage and think about Green in a way that is fun and not doom and gloom,” explained Rajeev. “The real important piece to the overall experience, however, is the unique supporting of causes. One of the premises that Greenwala was founded on is that of social responsibility. That if we, as a society, help those helping others, not only will we be greener, but we will also live richer and more fulfilling lives.”
There are currently 3 contests for which they’re accepting submissions:
- Cooking Green Video: Here, you can put your organic culinary mastery to good use by cooking up an original green recipe, and filming it Top Chef style. Winner receives a $250 gift card to Whole Foods with a matching donation to Kiva.
- Design a Greenwala T-shirt: This contest lets you get your Fashion Show on (yes, I watch too much Bravo TV) by designing an eco-friendly tee that communicates Greenwala’s mission of community, sustainability and green living. Winner will get $250 bucks with a matching donation to Ashoka, and the satisfaction of creating the latest trend in eco-fashion. Green is, after all, the new black.
- Hug-A-Tree Photo: The most popular contest so far, with over 220 entries, participants can submit photos of them hugging their favorite trees that would do Ansel Adams proud. Winner snags $250 and a Canon PowerShot SD1200IS 10 MP Digital Camera with matching donation to Trees for the Future.
The contest is open to all Greenwala members, and entries are due by August 15, 2009. Not only are they cool ideas, but the prizes aren’t too shabby, either. “Ultimately, we want the prizes to be even bigger,” continued the ambitious Rajeev. “That way, the matching donations for the causes will be bigger. We hope to partner with brands that share our values to provide an experience that is truly engaging and fun.”
Looks like Greenwala is already off to a promising start, and the beauty of this initiative, is that it brings people together and fosters a community rallying around the environment and social issues. By creating the submissions and voting on the entries, both entrant and voter become active participants in the causes Greenwala is supporting. And when they remember that funny cooking video or the totally rad eco-tee, they’ll recall the benefitting cause as well.
Top-of-mind awareness for these organizations is a critical first step in motivating action, and if organic hummus recipes and chumming up with cherry trees is the gateway, I say grab a tortilla and say, “cheese.”