Birthday Forest

Birthday Forest

kathmandu, Nepalkathmandu, Nepal
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
Growth
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Birthday Forest uses IT to encourage Individuals and corporate to plant trees at least on their birthday. Option of self plantation or plantation on behalf is available. As growing trees is more challenging then planting, Birthday Forest will take care of it with 100% visibility via GPS, PhotoUpdate

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Due to alarming rate of deforestation, its adverse effect is seen globally. Nepal is located in extreme climate change vulnerability zone in south Asia and is directly under threat. Urbanization is also causing more lungs and heart diseases among Nepalese. Thus planting trees seems to be the easiest solution but its not that easy to do it. The simple looking task involves getting sapling, finding land and the biggest challenge is to grow it.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Birthday is a special day which brings family, friends together and best wishes/gifts are shared. What if people can plant trees or gift trees on birthday which will last for many years and at the same time sink carbon from atmosphere. Thus, Birthday Forest makes this possible and to make it special we will tag each plant with the name plate (it will include detail of person planting tree or gifting trees along with short message). Birthday Forest will also provide URL which contains GPS location of the plant, picture of the plant which will be updated every six months for the duration of three years and we will take care of the plant (example: http://www.birthdayforest.org/bikal/ ).[Option to choose place and sapling is available]
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Birthday Forest helps in afforestation by allowing people to plant trees on special occasion like birthday, anniversary, in memory of someone or any other event. Once request is received, tree is planted in community forest and URL is setup which includes GPS location and picture of the plant along with name plate. Clear visibility and emotional attachment is the utmost value to our users. For example: Recently a guy "Shirshak Dongol" gifted his girlfriend "Krita Maharjan" a japanese national flower called "Japanese Cherry" which they both planted together (http://birthdayforest.org/shikri/). Similarly birthday forest planted on behalf of "Bikal shrestha" in memory of his late mother (http://birthdayforest.org/bikal/).
Sustainability

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

There are many NGO's, INGO's locally and internationally working on tree plantation campaign. Few which are doing good includes: grow-trees.com, plantabillion.org, treesforthefuture.org. "As growing trees is more challenging then plantation", birthday forest address the issue of taking care of plant where other organization has failed to address. Few are able to offer plantation in special occasion but no one are able to build the emotional attachment as we do along with visibility by providing unique profile page containing picture of the plant, GPS location, name plate and 3 years guarantee.
About You
Organization:
Birthday Forest
About You
First Name

roshan

Last Name

karki

About Your Project
Organization Name

Birthday Forest

Organization Country

, BA, kathmandu

Country where this project is creating social impact

, BA, kathmandu

How long has your organization been operating?

Less than a year

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Your Solution
Founding Story: Share a story about the “Aha!” moment that led you to get started and/or to see the potential for this to succeed.

While Mr. Samrakchan Ghimire (co-founder) was on his way back to "Kathmandu" city from "Pokhara" from domestic airlines, he noticed that most of the land was barren in forest which was under threat from natural calamity. Influenced by this incident, later he proposed team members to take "birthday forest" in a competition called Pivot Nepal organized by infodev (http://pivot.mobilenepal.net/), which was a competition to find best mobile app business ideas in the context of Nepal.

In the competition we were winner in "Social Development" category and also won USD1000. But the best part was the huge positive feedback from all the people including judges and business personal . This was not only Aha moment but very big wow moment for us.

Select Sector(s): To which of Unilever's categories of sustainability does your solution apply?

Greenhouse Gases, Sustainable Agriculture.

Measurable Impact
Audience: Who have you identified as your customers/recipients and why? How will you get your solution to them or engage them in your initiative?

We have identified individuals with age group of above 15 and corporate of different size our customers. Individual above 15 are more aware towards environment and as our project is also attached with birthday it creates value to them. Similarly for corporates planting trees in both urban and rural areas will serve both as a CSR and easy advertisement. We are also trying to focus on Nepalese abroad along with foreigners to promote tree plantation which will help them reduce their carbon foot print.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date and expected impact in the future?

Environment:
- Nepal ranks 4th in global climate change vulnerability index, thus our initiative will help to decrease natural calamities.
- Helps to balance eco-system, preserve natural habitat, preserve water shed.
- Help to improve high polluted city area and increase aesthetic beauty of city.

Social:
- We are involved in different awareness programs.
- Plantation in special occasion helps to build positive behavioral change, a feeling of ownership and emotional attachment with plant.
- Helps to mitigate carbon footprint of individual/corporate.

Economic:
- We intends to tie up with 17,000+ community forest through out Nepal from existing 2 community forest. Mobilizing local community user, creates huge job opportunity.
- People in urban area benefits from forest product by rational uses.

Within 3 month of active operation more than 200 plants has been planted.

Growth, Finance & Leadership
Scaling the Solution: How do you intend to scale your activities over the next two years (e.g., reach new markets, diversify solutions, etc.)? What will make this possible?

locally:
1) Our customers are both internet users and non-internet users. Thus our plan is to promote our initiative to local community and build a culture of planting trees. Our major target will be local corporate and individual. Few local travel agencies has already contacted us to include tree plantation in travel package thus we see huge potential in travel industry as well. We also have plan to tie-up with airlines companies to allow user to offset their carbon footprint. At present we have already approached Municipality for tree plantation in the bank of river inside Kathmandu city.

Globally:
We will be promoting international corporates birthday by running online marketing campaign and participating in social community.

Financial Sustainability: What is your business model to ensure financial sustainability?

Being a Not for profit company, we still believe there needs to be a business model for it to be sustainable. And we do not believe on donation to keep on running the company. Thus we charge USD 9.95 for nepalese and USD 25 for foreigner to plant a tree. We also target tree plantation in local festivals to localize and create value to the people. We also give $2 per plant to community forest user this creates win win situation for all.

Experience: Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered.

Till date this is my first entrepreneurial initiative. Prior to this i had taken stanford university entrepreneurship program which gave me a lot of insight about startup. I have also been following and participating in hackathon program and different IT programs. Me and my team is passionate about this startup and each on has different set of skills which is proving to be fruitful to take our company forward.