A little help to make a big difference
Two self-confessed ‘‘outdoor adventure bums’’ have been using their talents to help save the planet - one greeting card at a time.
Semi-professional skier Pete Oswald, 32, from Blenheim, and geology graduate girlfriend Sophie Stevens, 30, founded their own card company, Little Difference, in 2016.
And a forest in the remote island of Madagascar, off the east coast of Africa, is 25,000 trees better off thanks to their environmental efforts.
A percentage of each sale gets donated to plant a tree in Madagascar, creating jobs in the process.
But the duo have turned to popular capital-raising website Crowdfunding to help raise more money so they can concentrate on their business fulltime.
They only have until the end of the month to raise $10,000.
Crowdfunding uses small amounts of capital from a large number of people to finance new business ventures.
Oswald, who hit the headlines in 2014 when he rescued a snow balling sheep while on a ski photo shoot, says the company was born out of necessity.
‘‘Soph and I were in Innsbruck in Austria one ski season and we had no money. Soph did a design and we made a few cards and went selling them from door-todoor. We ended up selling quite a lot and it saw us through the rest of the season.
‘‘We actually can’t remember who came up with the original idea of planting trees but we both wanted to create a brand which produces something beneficial while reducing the impact on the environment,’’ he says.
Stevens hand designs all the products which are photographed and printed on 100 per cent recycled paper by a printing company in the United Kingdom.
The pair travelled Madagascar last May.
‘‘After meeting the planters and the people who oversee it, we have a lot of confidence in what they’re doing. They’re doing an
to amazing job,’’ Oswald says.
The campaign will only be funded if $10,000 is pledged by November 1 at 11.59pm [UK time].
For further information visit theupeffect.com.
Little Difference founders Peter Oswald and Sophie Stevens travel the globe for inspiration for their environmentally-friendly firm.