Guide to Cause-Based Businesses

As much as I love a good bargain (and I do!), as I’ve gotten older, I value putting my money where it can do additional good – even if that may cost slightly more. I suspect that many Xennials feel this way (after all, Millenials are the TOMS generation!)

So, if you’d like to put your money to good use AND come away with something for yourself (really, what better bargain is there?), here are a few places around town where you can do just that.

Coffee

Crest Coffee

Although Crest Coffee is next door to a church, it is it’s own unique entity, serving Nashville by partnering with a different community organization each month. Not only does Crest Coffee give back, but their coffee is also completely donation-based, allowing everyone in the community to have the benefit of a good cup o’ joe.

Humphreys Street Coffee

Humphreys Street Coffee in Wedgewood-Houston is a social enterprise of Harvest Hands CDC and employs area youth, giving them not only jobs, but also mentoring opportunities, trainings, and skills that go beyond the workplace. 100% of their profits are reinvested into programs and scholarships that support students. “Our expectation is that the students we employ will transform and impact their own neighborhood in positive ways.”

They also happen to be one of my favorite spots for remote work, and the space itself is a beautiful, light-filled converted former church.

Land of a Thousand Hills

Land of a Thousand Hills coffee in West Nashville has a more global focus. Their Do Good Initiative not only sustainably sources coffee from Rwandan farmers, but also provides health care, schools, and other programs for those farming communities.

The Well

Another favorite spot of mine, the Well uses their profits to help fund clean water projects in the countries from which they source their coffee. But, they don’t forget about their local community either, having partnered with several initiatives to provide clean water and services to those impacted by the 2020 tornado. And, with several locations around Nashville, you’re never too far away to do a little good.

Food/Drink

Christie Cookie Co.

A Nashville original, Christie Cookies are delicious AND they give back, locally and nationally! Check out their “For a Cause” page to see all the special edition cookies you can order to support various organizations.

A little extra: Did you know Christie Cookie Co. is the creator of the DoubleTree cookie?? If you’ve ever stayed at a DoubleTree, you know that is one of the best cookies on the planet!

The Cookery

From their website, “the Cookery is a nonprofit restaurant, cafe, caterer, and event space that trains formerly homeless men in the Culinary Arts to prepare them for employment in Nashville’s food industry.” They are open most days for breakfast and lunch and have a convenient location just beyond the busy district of 12South.

Etch

You know the roasted cauliflower at Etch is delicious. But did you also know that $1 from each order goes towards Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee? A few years ago, it was reported that Etch donated $17,000 dollars from their cauliflower proceeds! You can find Etch in SoBro – and on my guide to happy hours after 5!

Tennessee Brew Works

Every Sunday, Tennessee Brew Works donates $1 from every pint to a local charity or non-profit. Their chosen partner changes quarterly, so follow their Instagram for the latest partner. Sunday Funday and Sunday Give-Back-Day? I’m in.

The Café at Thistle Farms

For over 25 years, “Thistle Farms has lit a pathway of healing and hope for women survivors of trafficking, prostitution, and addiction.” The Cafe is one way to support this beautiful mission, as it provides employment for those Thistle Farms serves, as well as an entrepreneurial stream for the organization’s mission (including safe housing, therapy, legal services, and more).

The food is delicious, the service friendly, the space lovely and inviting. It’s a special place.

Shops

ABLE

As beautiful as any boutique in Nashville, Able’s mission is to empower women by providing living wages, ensuring on-the-job safety, and working for equality. They partner with vendors who share that mission and are seeking to bring about change in the fashion industry – at home, and around the world.

Ten Thousand Villages

Although not unique to Nashville, Ten Thousand Villages is one of the leaders in fair-trade merchandising, offering unique gifts from around the world. Their mission is to ensure makers earn a fair, living wage in safe working conditions, to invest in partnerships that empower women and communities, to celebrate diverse cultures, all while caring for the earth.

Project 615

Project 615 t-shirts and hats have become nearly ubiquitous with Nashville, and it’s easy to see why! With soft fabric, high quality printing, and catchy slogans (my personal favorite is “I climbed Mt. Juliet”), what’s not to love? Plus, since they started in 2010, Project 615 has donated nearly $1,000,000 to world-changing causes and local non-profits. They live our their most well-known t-shirt every day and “Spread Love. It’s the Nashville Way.”

Thistle Farms

You can read about the mission above, but the shop is just as worth a visit as the café! Gorgeous hand made accessories, deliciously scented soaps and candles, and a full line of natural bath products, Thistle Farms is the best place to treat yourself or find some gifts – while also supporting their incredible programs.

Other

The Listening Room

At least monthly, The Listening Room hosts Sound Good, Do Good – donating the cover charges from the events to non-profits or people in need. Check their calendar or socials for the next opportunity to give back while hearing some of the best music in town!

The Russell and the Gallatin Hotel

The Russell

The Russell and its sister hotel, the Gallatin, both offer unique, boutique stays in East Nashville. The Russell is in a beautiful, reclaimed church with gorgeous stained glass windows. The Gallatin is also a reclaimed church, but it has a more eclectic feel with a different color scheme per floor (that carries down to the room refrigerators!). But, even better, much of their proceeds support local homeless ministries, with the Russell’s website estimating that the average stay provides 16 beds and meals at local shelters. So, whether you are on a staycation or have friends coming to visit, be sure to put the Russell and the Gallatin at the top of the list of places to stay!


Nashville is such a giving community, I feel almost certain that I missed something on this list. Did I? Please send me an email or drop us a tip below if so! And leave a comment to let us know your favorite way to shop and give back!

XO,
X
Pass It On!

Leave a Reply