Tropical Smoothie Cafe

A New Way of Doing Business – Tropical Smoothie Cafe and Camp Sunshine

Social Enterprise has much been on my mind lately.  The concept is so foreign to the Wall Street “Greed is Good” I grew up with in the 1980’s.  Social Enterprise is where for-profit business is blended with a non-profit giving back element.  Sometimes it takes the form of a non-profit which creates a for-profit arm to self-sustain its mission.  Sometimes it is a for-profit business that adds in a generous focus on heart and humanity. Tropical Smoothie Cafe

Some Social Enterprises are like Tropical Smoothie Café which for the past seven years has hosted National Flip Flop Day to benefit Camp Sunshine.  Camp Sunshine is the only retreat in the nation whose mission is dedicated to impacting children with life-threatening illnesses, and the families and siblings who help them through it.  In 2013, the Camp will serve as many as 800 children with life-threatening illnesses and their families from around the country, free of charge.  Camp Sunshine is able to help so many in part due to Tropical Smoothie Café’s fundraising efforts.  To date, Tropical Smoothie Café has donated $1.5 million to Camp Sunshine, sending 750 children and their families to experience the camp. Last year, Tropical Smoothie Café raised $400,000 for Camp Sunshine and the company plans to exceed that number in 2013 by raising $500,000.  Plus Tropical Smoothie Café locations nationwide collectively gave away close to 200,000 smoothies for the cause, which equated to approximately $1 million in free smoothies. 

The old business model used to be either / or.  Either a corporation is for profit or it is not for profit.  Today many businesses are both / and.  They are both for-profit and have a giving back element.  These new businesses aim to be profitable and to benefit the larger community.  Take a look at the businesses around you and notice how many are more than just money-making enterprises.  Take a look at your own business.  What are ways you can or are giving back to your community?  What are ways you can support those where you live or support the causes you believe in? Share with us your thoughts on Social Enterprise and how you see this new role of business.  


Comment (1)

  1. Melissa Heisler
    June 15, 2014

    Join us in Arlington Heights, IL for the 8th National Flip Flop Day on June 20, 2014

    Got flip flops? Put them on and join us for a FREE 24oz. Jetty Punch smoothie on National Flip Flop Day – June 20th from 2-7pm – and you’ll be helping kid to Camp Sunshine.

    Customers who purchase a $5 flip flop key fob to support National Charity Partner Camp Sunshine will be rewarded with a 10 percent discount on all future purchases throughout the end of the year!

    Tropical Smoothie Cafe Arlington Heights
    315 E Rand Rd, Arlington Heights, Illinois 60004

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