The Body Shop Is Building Bio Bridges: How You Can Help #FindReggieLove
Allow us to introduce you to Reggie, an adorable and endangered Red Shanked Douc native to the Khe Nuoc Trong forest in Vietnam—the setting for The Body Shop’s Bio-Bridges initiative. Bio-Bridges help to restore and regenerate rainforests around the globe, increasing the biodiversity, and helping endangered animals like Reggie find love in hopes that they won’t be endangered for long. To find out more about the initiative and its #findreggielove campaign—aka how you can help!—we chatted with The Body Shop’s General Manager Megan Grant.
“The Body Shop has always believed that business should be a force for good. We were the first in the industry to use Community Trade [ingredients] and we’re still the pioneers of it,” Grant says. “The Bio-Bridges initiative is just one element of our new Commitment to Enrich Not Exploit the world—including our people, products and planet—and supports the brand in its aim to be the world’s most ethical and sustainable global business.” Bio-Bridges help to regenerate deforested and degraded lands, helping endangered plant species to grow, and allowing animals to breed and thrive once again.
These ethical principles were the building blocks The Body Shop’s founder Anita Roddick built the brand on and continuing to enrich the world today is how the brand is keeping her spirit and passion for doing good alive. “Anita’s mission was to tackle the issues of the here and now,” Grant says. “The environment, illegal deforestation, and endangered species are serious issues that are not easy to resolve. Through our Bio-Bridges program, we are helping to start the conversation and encourage people to start taking action to make a positive change.”
“It’s incredibly important to build these Bio-Bridges to preserve our biological treasures, which have been destroyed through poaching and illegal logging,” she explains. “They’re an innovative and modernized way of creating passages of biodiversity allowing wider forestry to flourish and its inhabitants to live in environments they are meant to; rather than depleted trunks and logs. In Vietnam for example, we aim to see endangered species multiply in the next five to 10 years. We are acting as the vessel that catalyzes our previously independently thriving environment to prosper once again.”
The Body Shop’s first Bio-Bridges were in the Khe Nuoc Trong forest in North Central Vietnam—home of rare species such as the Burmese Python. The brand works with World Land Trust and a Vietnam based Conservation Centre, as well as the local schools and community, to encourage sustainable forest resource use and farming. “On a general note, building Bio-Bridges raises awareness in the territories they are built in,” Grant says. “They generate discussion, influence the youth, and spark inspiration to make depleted environments thrive once again. These communities may not have had the resources to synergize with other forces and preserve these lands—that’s where we come in and act as a connecting link to make ends meet.”
“As we celebrate our 40th Anniversary this year, we are reaffirming our position as a leader in ethical, sustainable business with our Commitment to Enrich Not Exploit the world,” Grant says. “It’s about staying true to our roots and enriching the world around us, while still offering high-quality, fairly traded, cruelty-free products—from our cult-classic Body Butters to innovative Shade Adjusting Drops to our iconic Tea Tree products.” In fact, these beloved products are exactly how you can get involved! “We’ve always believed in direct involvement on our part as well as on the part of our customers, and Helping Reggie Find Love is no exception,” Grant says. “Our campaign to Help Reggie Find Love gives customers the opportunity to directly support the project and follow Reggie throughout his journey to find a mate with the help of the new Bio-Bridges.”
Every purchase through August 22, 2016—in stores and online—whether it’s a creamy Body Butter or an oil-zapping Tea Tree Oil face wash, helps to restore and protect one square meter of habitat in the forest. Plus, you can join the conversation online, by taking a photo of your purchase and using the hashtag #findreggielove.Learn more about the initiative here.