Impact Report

2014-2015

A LETTER FROM OUR CIO

In October of 2013, Cotopaxi’s founders set off on an ambitious mission. Their goal was to build an innovative outdoor gear company that could make meaningful strides toward reducing global poverty. Drawing from best practices from the outdoor industry and the global development sector, they built a company with the dual purpose of inspiring adventure and alleviating poverty. The social mission was formalized in the company’s founding documents and shortly thereafter, Cotopaxi became the first company in the nation to incorporate as a benefit corporation from inception and then receive venture capital. The benefit corporation model enables a company to write their social and environmental purpose into their charter and articles of incorporation, ensuring that those values remain elevated as the company grows and evolves.

Cotopaxi strongly believes in the power of business to drive social change. We are also compelled by the incredible power of adventure to connect the world. With travel and adventure come exposure to new experiences, new perspectives on life, and often unique friendships. We’ve each forged incredible connections during transformative moments of exploration and, so often, those connections remain alive within us long after we return back to the comforts of home.

Some of the most incredible moments in history have taken place when humanity united to solve a problem. Through the fusion of adventure and business, we hope to ignite the passions of our community, turn inspiration into action, and build a movement for lasting, collective good. 2015 has been a year of incredible momentum and growth for Cotopaxi. I joined the team in May to lead the company’s global giving strategy and am excited to share our progress through this inaugural impact report. There’s still a lot to do, and we’ve just scratched the surface of what we think we can accomplish together. Stay tuned, and adventure on.

Sincerly,

Signature

Lindsey Kneuven Chief Impact Officer

Some of the most incredible moments in history have taken place when humanity united to solve a problem.

OUR COMMITMENT

Over the past two years, we have made solid progress against our goals and are excited to share some highlights with you.

As outlined in our articles of incorporation, Cotopaxi’s stated public benefit is “using its business to inspire social and environmental change that results in the improvement of the human condition, increased social consciousness and the amelioration of poverty.” In pursuit of these goals, Cotopaxi has funded numerous grants to nonprofits around the world that focus on three key areas: health, education, and livelihoods. Each grant is designed to build a sustainable pathway out of poverty in partnership with the local community.

Our 2014 and 2015 grants have focused on:

  • Improving access to quality education in Nepal, Ecuador, Tanzania, the Philippines, and Ghana;
  • Reducing under-five mortality rates through midwifery training in Guatemala; and
  • Developing sustainable livelihoods in partnership with each of our grantees.

2015 also marked the launch of Cotopaxi’s first significant skills-based volunteer initiative - a computer 
science training program for refugee youth in Salt Lake City.

1
CHOICE HUMANITARIAN

LOCATION: Guatamala

FOCUS AREA: Health

PROGRAM: Midwife Training

2
QOSQO MAKI

LOCATION: Ecuador

FOCUS AREA: Education

PROGRAM: Supplemental Learning

3
MARIA IMACULADA 
ORPHANAGE

LOCATION: Bolivia

FOCUS AREA: Education

PROGRAM: Supplemental Learning

4
RADIATING HOPE

LOCATION: Senegal

FOCUS AREA: Health

PROGRAM: Cancer Treatments

5
BRIGHTEN YOUR CORNER

LOCATION: Ghana

FOCUS AREA: Education

PROGRAM: School Access

6
THE KILIMANJARO KIDS COMMUNITY

LOCATION: Tanzania

FOCUS AREA: Education

PROGRAM: Supplemental Learning

7
WHOLIVES

LOCATION: Philippines

FOCUS AREA: Health

PROGRAM: Water & Sanitation

8
HEALTH & ED FOR NEPAL

LOCATION: Nepal

FOCUS AREA: Education

PROGRAM: Supplemental Learning

9
PHILIPPINE COMMUNITY FUND

LOCATION: Philippines

FOCUS AREA: Education

PROGRAM: School Access

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9

THIS YEAR'S HIGHLIGHTS

A Look at What We Have Done in 2015

RADIATING HOPE

Cancer has emerged as the leading cause of death in Africa, killing more people than HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined. Cotopaxi partnered with Radiating Hope to respond to the needs of cancer patients in West Africa. Together, we focused on Senegal, which is home to over 13 million people and has just one radiation clinic. Around 15- 20% of the patients seen in the Senegalese radiation clinic come from a neighboring country that lacks the equipment needed to treat cancer. Patients need 30 treatments on average. Cotopaxi’s funds will be used to provide 175 radiation treatments for individuals in need.

CHOICE HUMANITARIAN

Cotopaxi’s CHOICE Humanitarian project in Guatemala funds midwifery training for women living in 29 rural communities. Women in the Queqchi communities of Guatemala have a tradition of giving birth in their homes with the help of other women in the community. A home birth presents many challenges in these rural villages such as unsanitary birthing conditions, lack of basic support in the event of birth complications, as a result of the midwife training program, mothers and children in the 29 villages are three times more likely to survive childbirth. Since it began in 2011, this program has achieved a 66% reduction in infant mortality rates and a 69% reduction in maternal mortality rates across the Queqchi communities.

BRIGHTEN YOUR CORNER

Cotopaxi is rebuilding a school in rural Ghana together with the local community. The majority of community members in Ghana are farmers who earn a highly seasonal income. The average estimated income for a family of 6 is around $40/month. Access to quality education represents a pathway out of poverty for the youth in this region, but the local primary school had eroded to a point that did not provide su cient shelter and prevented youth from attending school. In response, Cotopaxi has joined forces with local parents, community leaders, and the Ministry of Education to co-fund the rebuilding of the school.

HEALTH & ED 4 NEPAL

Cotopaxi’s grant to Health & Ed 4 Nepal has strengthened access to quality education in Kumari, Nepal. Over the course of the grant term, programs have been implemented that increase the local school’s capacity from 250 youth to 500. Funding has also enabled library programming that enriches student learning and provides opportunities for independent study.

WHOLIVES

In partnership with WHOLives.org, Cotopaxi supported the design and launch of a water project for a rural region in the Philippines. The drill is portable and designed for use by the the community. The project will create significant job opportunities and be used to drill wells that provide access to clean water for several thousand households. In addition, wells will be drilled at local schools to ensure students have access to clean drinking water and proper water and sanitation resources. The community will also be able to utilize the drill for private projects that generate revenue and fuel local development. The model stimulates local job growth, program sustainability, and improved water and sanitation access.

COTOPAXI QUESTIVAL

Questival is Cotopaxi’s 24-hour adventure scavenger hunt. Over the course of the event, teams complete social impact challenges and create impressive collective impact.

Highlights

2,250 pounds of food donated to Project Open Hand in San Francisco, CA over the course of 4 hours.

1,918 pounds of food donated to Marion Polk Food Share in Oregon.

28,685 pieces of trash picked up at parks and along trails.

Over 1,000 hours volunteered in Salt Lake City in 24 hours.

317 meals provided to homeless individuals.

1,323 random acts of kindness completed across 6 states.

CONTACT US

Interested in learning more about our social impact work?
We would love to hear from you.

impact@cotopaxi.com
844.268.6729
twitter.com/cotopaxi