Simon Griffiths is asking you to drink away the world’s problems.
The founder of Melbourne social enterprises Shebeen and Who Gives a Crap, Griffiths is attempting to re-think the usual process of global aid giving, and his latest project involves something we’ll probably be doing a lot of this month anyway.
“We all like to go out and have a glass of beer or wine to unwind as part of the day, and that’s something that, as Australians, is a big part of our culture – be it a good or bad thing,” says Griffiths. “What we’re saying is: we all do this, but let’s do it in a way that’s makes more sense than what we’ve been doing previously.”
Shebeen is the world’s only not-for-profit bar. It donates 100 per cent of its profit to aid projects spanning Africa, Asia and Latin America.
For Shebeen’s current campaign, the organisation is asking you to be excessively good: offering a range of “pledges”, with rewards ranging from a $20 meal with a drink of your choice at Shebeen, to a $5000 party pack for 100 of your friends.
The campaign is aiming for $50,000, around one quarter of which will be re-invested in the venue’s renovations and facilities, which at the moment also includes a downstairs band room. After the associated costs of the rewards have been deducted, the remainder will go directly to its overseas partners.
“We’re using the campaign to show that it’s possible to take a typical first world occurrence – excessive living – and show how it can be turned into something selfless and positive for someone else without having to change any habits or behavior.”
It’s a win-win.