We’re thrilled to kick off our ‘People We Love’ interview series in 2022 with Audrey Martin, the inspiring founder behind The Karma Collective. The Karma Collective is a social enterprise and Melbourne-based business that donates 50% of its profits to help animals in Australia and around the world. And since 2016, has donated over $60,000 to charities like Sun Bear Outreach and World Protection Australia. From the inspiration behind the The Karma Collective, to her goals for 2022, and her best piece of advice for anyone hoping to turn their passion into a business – we talk to Audrey about her impressive journey so far.
Hey Audrey, what inspired you to create The Karma Collective?
When I started The Karma Collective, I was working in corporate marketing. I liked my job but I always felt myself coming back to this feeling of wanting to work on something that gave back to the community. I used to make candles at home, so I spent a year refining my candle making skills and started selling them at markets around Melbourne, giving part of each sale back to different charities. It was initially meant to be a side gig.
You donate 50% of profits to animal charities – can you tell us where the money goes and its impact?
We partner with some really well known charities, such as World Animal Protection Australia, as well as grassroots charities like Sun Bear Outreach. Since launching, we’ve donated over $60,000 thanks to our amazing customers. The funds we have donated have helped with the 2020 Australian bushfire recovery, helped to build enclosures for rescued Sun Bears in Borneo, rehabilitate orphaned orangutans to teach them the skills they will need to return to the wild and more.
What advice would you give to someone hoping to turn their passion into a business?
Just give it a go! Even if you break your goal down into small steps – you’ll have something small to work towards each day. Chances are, you may fail the first time. You’ll have lots of ups and downs and you will make so many mistakes along the way, but so many people speak about wanting to start something new but they never do. I think it’s way better to give things a go and learn from them rather than spend your life wondering “what if”.
We’re well into the swing of 2022, what are your goals for this year?
Given what we have gone through the last 2 years, I’ve learnt that I just need to be agile and go with the flow. Both personally and with the business, I am just doing what I can each day and adjusting as things change.
How would you define success?
I see success as living a life that you are grateful for. For me, I am grateful to have a network of amazing friends and family, a job that is aligned to my values and everything I need for my family to survive (a home, food, etc). Everything else is a bonus.
If you had one mantra to live by, what would it be?
Be kind to others.
We love your handmade soy candles, do you have a favourite?
My favourite changes from time-to-time but at the moment I’m burning the Cacao & Amber and Blue Mountains candles.
And we have to ask, what’s your go-to Mylk Base?
Definitely the Nut Mylk Base, it’s so versatile and perfect for smoothies, bowls and baking!
Find out more about The Karma Collective here and support small Aussie businesses!