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Swimming Towards Positive Change

President of Wild Mint, Hannah Helsabeck, on why she joined 1% for the Planet and chose to support Reef Relief in Key West, Florida…

I went snorkeling quite a bit in the Keys when I was younger, and I distinctly remember the instructor telling us how endangered coral reefs had become.  As we swam over the reefs, I recalled that they were extremely sensitive, and caution had to be taken not to injure them with my fins.

It’s been a long time since I’ve had the chance to snorkel like I did when I was young, but I never forgot the lessons learned.  Especially being raised in South Florida, the idea of helping to protect these fragile reefs intrigued me.  After all, everything is interconnected, and what is good for the oceans and the planet, is also good for us.

That is also the reason I started my company, Wild Mint, with my mom in 2011.  Wild Mint is dedicated to helping people live toxin free, eco friendly lives by choosing healthier, safer products.  Plastics, for instance, contain harmful chemicals and end up in our landfills and oceans, where they are destructive.  In coral reef ecosystems, plastics are an especially large threat, often wrapping around and breaking off coral, entangling marine life, and killing animals such as sea gulls and turtles.  Striving for change, Wild Mint reinforces using reusable and biodegradable options that are safer, and help restore the balance between people and nature.

Upon deciding to get involved with 1% for the Planet, I easily chose Reef Relief, a nonprofit in South Florida that fights to save coral reefs.  To me, this was a local way to help contribute to a worldwide issue.  And I particularly liked how Reef Relief uses interactive techniques and education to inform people, especially children, about the problem.  Since I was touched as a child, I want other children to learn about the reefs so they can grow up and be another force for change.

In my life, 1% for the Planet helped make my passion to give back a lasting reality.  When I first heard about the mission of the company, I wanted to be involved.  Especially since my own company, Wild Mint, is about protecting people and the environment.  What better way to make a statement in something we already believe in, then to give back to a great environmental cause?  It is really amazing, actually, to be a part of this organization which has become so large and beneficial; in fact, it makes growing our own company even more exhilarating!  We plan to be a lasting member of 1% for the Planet, and hope to continue making a difference.  Because of course, healthy families have to first start with a healthy world.

Thanks for sharing your story Hannah!

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