Caring for each other and giving back to our community is very important to us, so important, “Be Kind” is one of our company’s core values! It’s with this in mind that Rocky Mountain Soap has been able to build a rich company culture that not only allows for profitability but also enables us to give back and support healthy communities. In the spirit of Giving Tuesday, we want to recognize some incredible organizations and women who are working hard to build a strong and bright future.

Here are just a few organizations and women we have partnered with. 

The New Mom Project

Becoming a new mom is an exciting and scary new adventure. The New Mom Projects strives to support women embarking on their journey into motherhood by donating not only essentials like diapers, playpens, and strollers but also providing much needed emotional support and medical guidance. Women who may not have the access to necessary resources can work with the New Mom Doula Project to ensure their little ones have a healthy start to life.

We chatted with Maria Karachalios about her efforts with the New Mom Project.

Maria stands in front of a raffle table looking proud

How did you get involved with the organization?

I'm a volunteer for NMP and I also have my own business - I'm in Hair Wellness and I carry a natural-based, anti-aging hair care line called Monat. The company promotes a Gratitude program that runs throughout the year. Giving back to the community is a large part of their mission. During the first week of December, they encourage their reps to host fundraising events that support families and children. Last year, they were in need of seven infant carriers and we were able to raise that money (and a little more!). I hosted a "Lady's Night" at a restaurant, similar to what I'm planning now. This year there will be a raffle as we mingle over complimentary appetizers and raffle prizes. We have more raffle prizes plus swag bags, so every lady leaves with something nice to pamper herself with, like Rocky Soaps.

A group of women dine at a nice restaurant

Sounds like a fun way to raise money for a very important cause. Can you tell me a little bit about how the project works?

The New Mom Project is a registered charity that supports new families. We accept referrals from hospitals, midwife clinics and community health centers throughout Toronto and the GTA, and provide clients with access to our clothing, gear, diaper bank, wellness seminars, and social support. 

Amazing. Can you tell us more about who and what is the primary focus of the campaign?

The NMP is starting a New Mom Doula Program. A doula provides emotional, physical and mental support during labour and postpartum. For our newcomer mothers, this also means support navigating a new hospital system, having an advocate, and having peer support. This campaign is raising funds for this high impact Doula Program. In addition to essentials like diapers, we are proud to provide education in parenting topics ranging from breastfeeding to safe sleep.

Thank you Maria for everything you and the NMP do to support new mom’s in your community! Your efforts will have a huge impact on these mom’s as they transition into motherhood and ultimately raise productive young adults who will have the capacity to give back in the future!

Inspire Her Society

Inspire her Society is a non-profit organization that aspires to help young women recognize their leadership potential. When we asked Tamreen, the president of Inspire Her Society, what leadership means to her and her organization she said,

“When we talk about leadership, it's about each woman's personal ability to impact and influence the world around her.”

Inspire Her society is nurturing the change makers and entrepreneurs of tomorrow! We had to shine a spotlight on this organization, so, we chatted with Tamreen to learn a little more about how she and her team inspire women to have the courage to take on leadership roles, a position many women are naturally good at but can shy away from.

Gift bag

How did the organization get started?

In 2017, we gathered as a group of professional women who recognized that women experience the workplace differently. We founded this group to create a supportive community for emerging leaders who identify as women. As part of advancing gender equality in the workplace, we wanted to create safe spaces for women to share their experiences and discuss tangible ways for women to become their best selves. It was a labour of love and took us nearly 10 months, which included countless strategy sessions on evening and weekends to build this organization.

That is such a good idea! Ultimately, what do you hope to accomplish with your organization?

We believe there's a leader in every chair, and we want to help more women recognize and develop their natural leadership strengths. To support that, we host a variety of workshops to give women useful tools and resources. In each of our events, we want women to find meaningful connections with their peers and walk away with practical advice they can apply in their personal lives. In the long term, we want to shift the conversation and redefine leadership potential. Overall, we encourage women to dare to be ambitious in all aspects of their lives.

woman gives speech at a conference

That’s so awesome! It’s great to see women rockin’ a leadership role, whether it’s at home or in the workplace! Can you think of any success stories from your organization that you would like to share?

In October, we hosted a leadership workshop and the following feedback we received from one our attendees is the best example of the impact we're trying to create,

"Sometimes I feel that I am desperately seeking my “purpose” so I always feel slightly out of place or unfulfilled. But I have never known how to find my purpose, now I feel like I have some tools to help and that gives me some inner peace and confidence. Thank you!"

It's incredibly fulfilling to hear from women that our workshops are giving women the knowledge and skills to tackle challenges head-on!

Thanks, Tamreen for working hard to inspire women to achieve their professional and personal goals! Your organization is inspirational and reminds us of our very own, Karina Birch, (CEO, mom, wife and all around powerhouse). Check out Karina’s story here.

The Chemo Pouf Project

This holiday season, not all of us will be nestled in a cozy home surrounded by loved ones. Stella and Dot Stylists wanted to help women facing chemotherapy feel as comfortable as possible, and so, The Chemo Pouf Project was born. It’s a collection of Stella and Dot stylists and customers who come together to pack a pouf full of comfort items like Rocky natural lip butters for women undergoing chemotherapy treatment. They are then donated to various cancer wards and nurses give the care kit to women who are coming in for their first round of chemo treatment. Imagine, on one of the scariest days of your life, how comforting it would be to receive a "pouf" of beautiful feel-good items from a group of caring women to help get you through.

We spoke with Heather, a Stella and Dot Stylist from Edmonton who spearheaded the project in her area by putting together 55 Poufs to donate to the Cross Cancer the Institute in Edmonton.

makeup bags surrounding a sign

This initiative has a really nice personal feel. We love the idea! Can you tell us a little bit more about the project? How does it work?

The reality is we have all been personally affected or know someone who has been affected by cancer. Essentially, a customer purchases a pouf for the cause and the commissions earned by the stylist go towards filling the pouf with comfort items. Then the poufs are packaged up and tied with a ribbon and a sweet little note offering words of encouragement, love, and inspiration and dropped off at cancer treatment centres all over North America.

What kind of items do you put in Pouf?

We put a lot of thought into the items we include in the Chemo Pouf. Sometimes, the patient does not even expect that they are staying for treatment that day and then end up having to. So, they are there unprepared and our little poufs help them feel more comfortable and less unprepared. We include items such as cozy socks, lip balm, lotion, gum, mints, crossword puzzle books, toothbrush/toothpaste, and granola bars. We try to be very careful and aware of what types of personal care items we are adding and make sure they are paraben free and as toxin-free as possible as we know this is very important to most people going through cancer treatment. Which is why we are SO thankful for the support and generous donation of lip butter from Rocky Mountain Soap!

Swag displayed beside a makeup bag

Wow! Any woman would be excited to receive this. This is an amazing initiative that can bring some hope and inspiration to the scariest day of someone’s life!

It is amazing and humbling to be in a position to give back in this way. Many stylists and their customers who sponsor the poufs have personal stories of going through treatment or walking beside someone who has. This has helped direct us as to what to put in the poufs and also helped us to realize how special and important this small act is. It is such an honor to be able to bring a smile to someone's face on one of their darkest and scariest days.

Thank you so much Heather for your hard work in running this initiative in Edmonton! What you do is very special and we wanted to recognize strong and powerful women like yourself who work hard to give back. Thank you!

There are so many incredible women who find inspirational ways to give back to their communities, we wish we had more time to tell you about all the amazing people and organizations we partner with. In the spirit of Giving Tuesday, we want to hear about a woman in your life who goes above and beyond to shake things up, inspire change and give back. Leave your story in the comment section below. 


Originally published November 27, 2018

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