Birthdays, Christmas, Easter, Weddings, Births…. all these things are made nicer when we know that our loved ones are thinking of us. The traditional way is to send a greeting card and we have been doing it since the ancient Chinese sent Happy New Year cards. Ranging from home made with love, through to super thrifty in Poundland up to beautifully crafted from a craft fair, greetings cards have one thing in common – waste. WRAP say the UK use 300,000 tonnes of card packaging at Christmas, which is about the weight of 2 million Reindeer. Ho ho ho. Add to that the fact that the cards are only on display for 2 weeks on average plus all the CO2 used to post the cards in the first place, then to transport them to a recycling plant later. Greeting cards are not good for the environment.
I keep the nicest cards that are sent to me. I love the range of artist cat pun cards from niaski.co.uk and I’m typing this next to a notice board with a Dodo and a war time warning that says “Don’t take the Squander bug when you go shopping”. I’ve spent hours at Christmas making new cards from old and had a very jolly and slightly drunken craft session one year sticking huge Santas onto tiny sleighs. Eventually though, most of these cards will get either thrown away or recycled.
There is a brilliant alternative to sending cardboard, it will save you postage and it will make you feel great by being altruistic. Statistics from Mintel say the UK spent £259 million on boxed Christmas cards in 2010. If just a fraction of that went to charity the world would be a better place.
Hope Springs ecards have a nice varied selection of ecards for all sorts of occasions. Some are animated and you can personalise all of them with your own message. The clever bit is that you can schedule them which is a real time saver. There are no fixed prices for the Hope Springs ecards, they ask that you donate what you would pay for a traditional card. Then, with that donation they fund a clean water project in Africa. I asked how much of the donation goes towards running costs and the answer from Temi at Hope Springs was “We barely have any running costs. The ecard application is powered by WordPress, the hosting is free and one of our volunteers look after the running of the site. Now and again, we buy new images to improve our ecard range.”
Super easy to send
You don’t need to log in or anything, you just go to the site, choose a card you like, add the email (you can send it to multiple people if you like) and hit ‘send’ or schedule.
No waste and people who really need it benefit. Genius!
Disclosure – I was not paid or otherwise compensated to write this post.