How We Protect Our Home and Playground
Here at Bodhi Surf + Yoga, it’s not enough for us to teach surfing, lead yoga classes, or even provide memorable vacation experiences. We want to leave our mark on the world by actively reducing our physical mark, while at the same time increasing awareness, education, and action among our patrons and peers. We strive for our operations to consist of low-impact activities that leave our oceans bluer, our gardens greener, and smiles bigger. Moreover, with each of our actions, we hope to inspire equal reactions in our guests and neighbors. Today we are excited to share with you — the world community — Bodhi’s impact in the year 2017.
We believe that it is important for all companies who say they are environmental stewards or socially-driven enterprises to back up those claims with figures and reporting. This is helpful to the business to strive to do better with each and every passing year, and also to promote transparency for the consumer. In 2016, we became the first surf and yoga camp in the world to earn B Corp certification, and in 2017, we were named as a Best for the World business by B Lab in the Community category. We look back on 2017, pleased with our progress, but also to gain inspiration and momentum for 2018.
So what did Bodhi Surf + Yoga do to make this world a better place in 2017?
Community programs: Getting our hands dirty
Last year, we were excited to organize and contribute 3,914 volunteer hours to community based projects:
- The Bodhi owners (Travis, Pilar, Adrianne, and Gibran) personally volunteered 344 hours to community service projects
- We spearheaded 3570 volunteer hours in community projects
- Planted over 200 trees in the local Marino Ballena National Park
- Planted 700 saplings in the community tree nursery
- Co-constructed a life size whale from 3,494 single-use plastic bottles
Read more about our community programs.
Community investment: Buying into Bahia Ballena
Bodhi Surf + Yoga donated over $14,675 to community based projects and initiatives:
- Contributed $3,775 in conservation fees to support the national parks system in Costa Rica
- Provided $1,100 in funding to three local non-profits and generated an additional $700 from Bodhi guest contributions
- Helped kickstart and co-fund the Bahia Ballena Plastic Free Initiative, which now has over 50 participating businesses that refuse to use or distribute single-use plastic
Read more about our community investment.
Environmental awareness: Creating global stewards
In addition to having a relaxing, stress-free vacations full of fun and excitement, our guests experience the beauty and power of nature. They also learn the importance of our interconnectedness with the natural world. This fosters more environmental stewardship and often leads to behavior change in their families, offices, and homes. When guests leave Bodhi they have the option to sign the Ocean Guardian Pledge. The pledge comes from their hearts and can include any level of action. Often times they will sign up for the Ocean Guardian Digest emails that share useful information for how they can decrease their impact and protect our oceans (and planet as a whole) through everyday activities.
In 2017 we saw great success with our Ocean Guardian program:
- Increased our total Ocean Guardian members by 58
- Hosted our annual Ocean Guardian Contest to recognize and celebrate those taking action to help protect our environment for future generations
- We had 6 submissions to the contest
- We donated a Bodhi Sessions surf and yoga camp for two people (valued at $2,600) to the winner
We also understand the benefits that our society gains on investigations from the world of academia. We respect and recognize the need for peer-reviewed information that supports our mission. As such, in 2017 we were involved in a major contribution to the world of academia:
- Published in Life Without Plastic: The Practical Step-by-Step Guide to Avoiding Plastic to Keep Your Family and the Planet Healthy — get it here
Read more about our environmental awareness measures.
Impact Reduction: Reducing our footprint
2017 was a year for us to figure some stuff out about the direction we wanted to take, and do the necessary investigation. We actively started looking into and making some important decisions regarding:
- Offsetting guests’ travel carbon emissions
- Going carbon neutral as a business
- Installing solar panels
- Replacing necessary lodge items with more eco-friendly options
Read more about our impact reduction.
Global Donations: Sharing the stoke
In addition to our other donations, Bodhi donated another three surf and yoga camps for two people, with a total value of $7,800, to some causes or organizations that we feel strongly about:
While we are mainly an adult and surf and yoga camp, we also invest quite frequently in young minds via our summer work with Global Leadership Adventures. As we strive to preserve the earth’s beauty we know that it’s future generations that will need to keep the momentum going.
Read more about our global donations.
Responsible Travel: Educational, eye-opening experiences
We contributed to another publication by CREST by Business Expert Press:
- Marine Tourism, Climate Change, and Resilience in the Caribbean, Volume II: Recreation, Yachts, And Cruise Ships — read it here
Read more about how we support responsible travel.
Constantly moving forward: What’s to come in 2018
As mentioned before, we are always looking forward. 2017 was a huge success and we loved sharing our passions for surfing, yoga, the environment, and our community with guests and with you. But with 2018 almost a quarter of the way over, we are excited to share a little of what’s brewing and already underway.
- We are currently forming a partnership with Milk Crate to develop a Bodhi phone app that engages and tracks impactful behavior change in our guests as a result of the Bodhi experience
- A study that we contributed to, For-Profit Environmental Voluntourism in Costa Rica: teen volunteer, host community, and environmental outcomes, has been published in the Journal for Sustainable Tourism
- We have made a big commitment: to go carbon neutral in our operations, as well as offsetting our guests’ travel emissions!
We were honored to be recognized as Best for the World in the Community category. Going forward we hope to inspire other businesses to do what’s good for the world as well and eventually become Best for the World B Corporations!