It ability complete basics to begin a aliment business and a nonprofit alignment simultaneously, but basics are absolutely what aggressive Danielle LiVolsi to do it. It’s been ten years aback she and her bedmate Kevin LiVolsi founded NuttZo, a nut adulate and protein bar company, and the nonprofit Activity Left Behind.
It all started afterwards an adventure of 20/20 about Romanian orphanages aggressive them to accept a child. In 2002, they flew to the Ukraine and took home a three-and-a-half year old boy. LiVolsi says, “He was in the 5% of acme and weight, and as a mom, you apperceive the aboriginal three years of activity are the best important for academician development. Needless to say, I was a little fatigued out about super-boosting aggregate for him, and he didn’t like to eat.”
Her son had been active on borsch and had never abstruse to chew. To augment him, she accumulated atom with a agglomeration of altered basics and seeds in a aliment processor to accomplish a complete protein with nine capital amino acids. She says, “I put it on a banana, which he would eat, and he ate it. That became his staple.”
In 2005, they alternate to the Ukraine to accept addition boy who was alone one and a half. She says, “Every time you go over, you adhere out with all of these kids—all of their classmates—for three weeks while paperwork is accepting done. You get absolutely absorbed to the kids, and you accept little by little what’s activity to appear to them.” LiVolsi knew that in the Ukraine, the government alone supports kids up until age 14, and they get absolute little education. Outside the system, kids faced assorted threats, including abuse, drugs, and suicide. She capital to admonition the kids she couldn’t adopt, so aback she absitively to alpha a business, she was bent to accommodate the orphanages in some way.
Meanwhile, LiVolsi’s bedmate was accepting annoyed of charwoman nut adulate out of the aliment processor. One day he asked her, “Why don’t you aloof buy this stuff?”
She told him, “There’s no such affair as a multi-nut er—especially with peanuts,” and that was her aha moment. She had consistently capital to be an administrator and do article accompanying to food. She says, “This one was aloof like a no-brainer, because it was amazing. I would accomplish it for parties and for my accompany and everybody admired it.”
As they founded NuttZo in 2008, LiVolsi and her bedmate started their own nonprofit, Activity Left Behind. They had consistently had a botheration with the actuality that nonprofits accept so abundant overhead. She says, “When you accord a dollar and alone like 20 cents goes to the absolute nonprofit, it’s affectionate of adamantine to swallow.” They capital 100% of aggregate that was donated a and through NuttZo to go against allowance kids—and that’s absolutely how Activity Left Behind works. The 501(c)(3) nonprofit supports orphaned and alone accouchement about the world, and LiVolsi vets anniversary abode personally. She additionally leads an anniversary cruise to Peru for women volunteers to admonition body floors, acrylic walls, and do whatever abroad is needed.
LiVolsi believes actuality is a key additive to success. She says, “Just like we can faculty aback we accommodated addition if they’re actuality authentic, I anticipate consumers can faculty brands that are actuality authentic.”
How did she handle the capacity of starting a business and a nonprofit? She sums it up in one word: “LegalZoom.” She acclimated the acknowledged certificate website to alpha both the LLC and the 501(c)(3). While they now assignment with lawyers, she says, “There are some absolute simple agency to alpha your own business with absolute little money and still be legitimate.”
She acknowledges that there was a lot of paperwork, but warns added entrepreneurs not to be afraid away—because it’s not that complicated. She says, “It’s aloof paperwork! We accept to ample out forms every year for our kids and aback we go to the doctor. You’re able to get through it. It aloof seems alarming at first.
LiVolsi’s accent on actuality is additionally why NuttZo is certified as a B Corporation. She wants bodies to apperceive for abiding that the aggregation agency what it says about giving back. She says, “With a B Corp, you charge to be transparent. That’s one of the hardest certifications there is for a company.”
As CEO of NuttZo and controlling administrator of Activity Left Behind, LiVolsi shares some admonition for anyone who is starting a business, a nonprofit, or both at the aforementioned time, and activity overwhelmed. “Just booty one footfall advanced every day,” she says, “As continued as you’re affective advanced with the process, alike babyish steps, you’re affective in the appropriate direction.”
LiVolsi believes that the affliction affair anyone can do is let their abhorrence of abortion authority them back. She says, “Failure is an acute abhorrence we all have. It’s not fun to fail, but if you accept acceptable intentions, abundant assignment ethics, an amazing activity that’s analytic a problem—and if it’s food, it has to aftertaste amazing— I absolutely do.”
For LiVolsi, Founding NuttZo and Activity Left Behind at the aforementioned time fabricated sense. She capital to allotment her multi-nut articles with the apple and admonition orphaned kids. She says, “It affectionate of aloof seemed like the alone alternative.” It may not accept been anxiously planned—but it was a acute decision. Aback 2011, NuttZo and Activity Left Behind accept aloft added than $320,000 to admonition accouchement in charge about the world.
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