There are two statistics Denise Keller thinks everyone should know. First, 736 million people around the globe live in extreme poverty — defined by the World Bank as survivng on less than US$1.90 ($2.55)
a day. Second, US$63 trillion is spent on consumer products every year, reveals OECD National Accounts. These are startling figures the host-presenter hopes can be narrowed, or even flipped.
“The pandemic has affected almost every city and country in the world… Singapore is well removed from extreme poverty, but it doesn’t mean that people here are oblivious to the plight of so many others around the world,” says the 38-year-old.
So she partnered with Australian-based social enterprise Thankyou for its new campaign, No Small Plan. Through this initiative, the company will donate a portion of profits from its personal care range, like hand soaps, sanitisers and moisturisers, to charity.
Thankyou is in talks with consumer goods giants Unilever and P&G to make and distribute Thankyou products globally, which will go towards supporting organisations like International Justice Mission, which seeks to end modern-day slavery.
Thankyou has donated some A$14 million ($13.7 million) to partners like African Visionary Fund — which funds social changemakers working to address challenges such as education and gender- based violence — and Splash, which designs water, sanitation and hygiene solutions for vulnerable children in Asia and Africa.
Beyond its lofty goals, Thankyou’s No Small Plan campaign hopes to raise awareness of people who struggle to make ends meet every day. Says Keller: “I am just one person among many, but I feel that I can play my part in positive community efforts in the world. If a little bit of my time and effort can make a difference to another person in need, I’m happy to make that small contribution.”
Thankyou isn’t the only cause that Keller supports. An active figure in the charity circuit, she’s contributed her time and celebrity cred to numerous causes: she’s conducted charity yoga sessions for organisations like the Autism Association and Aware, serves as an advisory council member for the Al Gore-headed social enterprise The Climate Project, and is an ambassador and long-time supporter of animal welfare organisation Save Our Street Dogs.
Visit Thankyou’s website here to find out more about their campaign.
This story first appeared in the December 2020 issue of A Magazine.