Practice what you preach.
Our story is an unconventional one, and is essential to our work. Our mission, to tell better impact stories, was born out of a high-volume attack of internet "trolling" brought on by unlikeliest of places: volunteering.
It's a long story, and the short version is that our founder hosted a personal short-term "giving trip", which included the attendance of friends and family with large social followings. She shared photos and stories of the experience in what she thought was a positive way on social media. To her shock, she was met with outrage from activists against foreign volunteers taking unconsentual photos and exploiting the situation of the locals they were volunteering with. The terms that came up ranged from "white savior" to "barbie savior" to "poverty porn."
While the attack was painful, especially given the intention of the work, a valuable lesson was learned, that is now the foundation of our work at RipplEffect. That is: good intentions do not always translate to good work, and certainly don't translate to good storytelling. Purpose oriented work is riddled with sensitivities, and there is no clear definition to what is "right or wrong." That is why it is essential that any company or person seeking to engage in impact or purpose-first work develop a strong code of conduct, that best captures their intentions in the space.
Our message is never to tell our clients to back away. No, of course not. We believe deeply in purpose driven companies, and feel strongly the stories can be told in a way that compliments the mission at hand. Our job is to educate, advise and help other navigate this dynamic, ever-changing space, where there are no clear-guidelines.