Band4Hope: it's contagious pass it on…

© Band 4 Hope

Band4Hope is an innovate not-for-profit social enterprise which exists to encourage acts of kindness [Actions4Hope] and raise funds and awareness for charities through travelling, trackable wristbands called Band4Hopes. The idea is you purchase or inherit a Band4Hope keep it for a month then pass it on in return for a good deed done, or charitable donation. Lovely.

We met with co-founder Lucie earlier this week to find out more about this incredible project.

How does Band4Hope work?

Each wristband has been fashioned with a unique ID, which enables them and their impact to be tracked via an online map at Band4Hope.com. Part of the purchase price of each band goes to charity and those who the bands are passed on to are also encouraged to make a donation to the selected organisation.

It’s like sending out a modern day message in a bottle that starts a ripple of hope!

Vivienne Westwood, Annie Lennox and Lily Cole are among the stars spotted wearing Band4Hope wristbands. Various royals, rock stars and artists are also part of the circle.

Where did the idea for this project begin?

Lachlan and I came up with the concept in 2010 while travelling in support of the animal conservation charity called Back to Africa. We came across a business in Zimbabwe producing special copper and zinc wristbands and were inspired to do something which could spread hope, not just in Zimbabwe but across the globe. (When you’re stuck in a Land Rover for hours every day, its amazing the ideas you come up with!)

Band4Hope now helps to support around eighty artisans and their families. The Band4Hope design is inspired by the carved bone cuffs of the Himba people who we met in Namibia. Traditionally these cuffs are given as tokens of love, brotherhood, good luck, virility and wisdom.

You spend a lot of time traveling with the Tree4Hope, tell us how it works?

We asked festival goers to complete the sentence ‘I hope that in my lifetime…’ and were overwhelmed by the kind and generous, silly and honest hopes that they tied to its copper branches. These hopes came together to create something invisible but extremely powerful… a kind of magic was woven into the tree.

In its previous life, the Tree4Hope was a humble rotary clothes dryer and yet it has now inspired over 12,000 hopes!

You must have seen some pretty amazing Hope Trails in your time, tell us some of your favourites?

The Band4Hopes that are travelling in support of loved ones who have passed away are perhaps the most moving.  For example one Band4Hope is currently en route to Korea. It is travelling in honour of a young girl called Millie, who tragically died of leukaemia, at only 21.

As this Band4Hope travels, it is not only raising awareness and donations for the Anthony Nolan trust of which Millie was an avid campaigner before she died, but it is also spreading the message of Millie’s life.

“Reminding us to always be brave and kind and to dance like no one is watching.”

Visit Band4Hope to start your own Hope Trail or for more information, and don’t forget to follow Lucie and Lachlan on Twitter @Band4Hope

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