NORWALK, Conn., Oct. 18, 2018 – Connecticut startup, Viv, changed lives and laid the foundation for future impact during their first international service trip, where they built clean cookstoves for families in the Xiquin Sanahi village of Guatemala as part of their commitment to making life better on a global scale.
From October 2-9, 2018, representatives from the groundbreaking technology company, Viv, worked inside the homes of a small community in Guatemala to build clean cookstoves for families currently cooking on open fires with little to no ventilation. This project will help improve respiratory health for families that have previously lacked the resources to transition to cleaner burning stoves. Traditional methods of cooking, including open fires and inefficient cookstoves, use materials that cause a variety of harmful impacts. Clean cookstoves, however, can reduce illness related to smoke inhalation, lessen pollution, and reduce negative environmental impact. They also burn lower and slower, reducing the cost of firewood and improving economic conditions for the hard-working families.
The project was a joint effort with Long Way Home, an organization that gives communities the resources to overcome poverty through innovative solutions to local challenges. As a for-purpose company, Viv is wholeheartedly dedicated to using its resources and influence to enact meaningful change and help organizations like Long Way Home bring their visions to life. Viv’s CEO Cami Boehme believes that collaborating with organizations like Long Way Home to support the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstove’s goals is the best way companies and individuals can help work toward the goal of installing 100 million clean cookstoves by 2020.
“As business leaders it’s important that we act for purpose, not just for profit; we have the great opportunity to use business as a vehicle to address global issues,” said Boehme. “There are communities like this one all around the world that lack basic necessities critical to thrive. As business leaders, when we begin to see our local and global communities as included among our most critical stakeholders, we can begin to create change. Our business model thrives on demonstrating that you can do well by doing good and we are committed to including as many hands-on volunteers in our journey as possible.”
The project had just as much of an impact on the volunteers as it did on the community they served.
“There truly are no words to describe the impact a journey like this has on each of us as volunteers. The love our company and each of our representatives genuinely give to others is inspiring,” described Lisa Kenny, a Life Consultant for Viv who took part in this initiative.
“As we strive to help communities like Xiquin Sanahi thrive, one project and family at a time, each of us grow as people,” said Hannah Wells, Director of Impact and Engagement for Viv. “We’re brought closer together as we experience how billions of people are living without the very things we take for granted every day like clean air, water and adequate sanitation.”
Although Viv is a for-profit organization, the company also considers itself a “for-purpose company” committed to becoming a certified B-Corp after the prerequisite first year of business. Through their One At A Time initiative, Viv contributes a minimum of 1% of company revenue toward helping communities access energy, water, health, education, sustainability, and economic development – the six pillars the company focuses on. As their tagline suggests, they are dedicated to making “Life Better” for the world as a whole, with products that offer convenience, savings and peace of mind, and an entrepreneurial opportunity with heart. The company’s Better Life Platform offers savings and simplicity on things like energy, healthcare, travel and home security. And Viv’s Life Consultants can pursue a dynamic side gig offering products and services that change lives.
“We give people a way to live their life better – our customers, our consultants and our communities,” Boehme said. “Every time our customer base grows our capacity to give grows, and together with our customers and consultants, we are committed to helping make life better for millions around the world.”