You don't have to choose between making a difference and making a living

Choosing between doing something you care about and something that will make you money is not an easy decision. One of the most beautiful things about free markets is, more than any other system, the ability to do both at the same time. Such is the story of Hannah Hamilton, a former PR agent for major brands such as Michael Kors and Bally. Her time in the fashion industry, while enriching and inspiring, started to weigh on her as she discovered more about the ways in which clothing brands contribute to environmental waste.

While stories of people dramatically leaving behind their job to save the world might be inspiring, most of us live in the real world; with bills, obligations, and real costs. Hamilton still loved the fashion industry and wanted to make sure she could still take care of herself, but also knew she had an obligation to take action to help sustainability in the field. Thanks to entrepreneur Namrata Sandhu she found the intersection of these things in Vaayu, a new startup which provides analysis to different retailers on the various costs and impacts on the environment.

Not every job will align with every humanitarian passion project, but the beauty of the market is that there are ways to help others without sacrificing everything you have to do it, making it a sustainable career. As written in Positive News:

While her job switch happened organically, Hamilton doesn’t believe it’s always necessary to make such a big move to bring about change. She suggests arming yourself with knowledge, and finding chances to advocate for change where you are.

“If it feels disheartening, be a catalyst in helping to point out hotspots for action,” she suggests. “What is the company already doing that could be built upon? I don’t think people realise the agency – and impact – they can have as an individual.”

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