If you've been in our neighborhood for awhile, you'll know that I belong in a community called Coralus (formerly SheEO). As belonging is one of our core values, and integral to wellness, I feel called to share the essence of a relationship spanning years that has not only made my life better, but has made it more joyful.
Along the way, I invite you to consider if belonging in Coralus is what you need too.
Short Story: Would you like to join a community of changemakers?
Longer Story: It started as a agreement in principal.
In 2018, I read an article in the Listener about a woman from Canada with a new way of funding and supporting women in change maker businesses. And for the first time it was going to be offered in New Zealand. I was in!
I became an Activator by donating to a combined fund to loan out at zero interest to chosen businesses (called Ventures). As an Activator I was invited to vote on which applicants would become a Semi-finalist and then voting again, for them to be a Venture. I didn't really feel connected to the group, but I was satisfied to contribute to purpose-led entrepreneurs.
In 2020, even though I knew our business was going to have some adjusting to do due to Covid, I donated for a 3rd year. At the same time, there were weekly calls available to allow all of the Activators to gather, and over the weeks, I made people connections, and realised that I actually both needed and loved this community.
I also had to admit that I would really benefit from being supported by the very organisation I had been contributing to. It felt vulnerable to apply and to ask for that care.
I'm grateful we were chosen. We were voted in as a Venture along with an amazing cohort of Elisha Watson of Nisa, Kiri Nathan of Kiri Nathan Ltd and Kahui Collective, Kylie Matthews of AWWA (not in photo) and Candice Pardy of Jobloads.
This acceptance as a Venture was big for us. It gave me the support and the resources I needed to adjust for closed borders in New Zealand, and to finish the packaging for our refillable sunscreen. I worked in collaboration with Nita from Dalcini Stainless, a Canadian Venture to do the returnable stainless steel containers. And as our business adjusted to life without tourism, MJ Ryan, my Coralus development guide and the network breathed life into my tired heart.
Forward another two and half years, and this March, I got to spend a week with other New Zealand Ventures in the company of Vicki Saunders, the Canadian Founder of Coralus, and the woman behind the woman, MJ Ryan (pictured below- Vicki forward, Becky in the middle and MJ on right). I love both of them, and to be able to meet in person was a real treat.
These women and the incredible people they've attracted, are the Community that is woven within me. They are the community that stands with me. Maybe you can't see them when you open your sunscreen or Goodbye SANDFLY, but they are there.
At our gathering, we laughed a lot, we shared stories, resources, and introductions. We cooked together, took walks, listened and cared. Entrepreneurship can be lonely, especially when working in an extractive system. Getting together was a balm for all of us.
Coralus has taught me to ask for help when I need it, to receive more gracefully, and it has given me a place to be radically generous. It provides me, along with our business, a way to put all four of our core values into action: Belonging, Stewardship, Generosity and Celebration.
This is the new economy and we are magnetising it together.
As you read this, does it bring to mind a woman or non-binary purpose-led entrepreneur that could benefit from this kind of support? Invite them to Apply to become a Venture!
Applications for Australia and New Zealand are open until June 13th, and each country will choose a new cohort of entrepreneurs to support. The five new Ventures in New Zealand will join 22 NZ Ventures already resourced by Coralus. Now five years on from its NZ start, we have now established a PERPETUAL fund of zero percent interest loans. That's amazing!
This is an exciting time to join Coralus as an Activator. For $92/month you get a subscription to the world you'd like to see, and you belong in a community of like-hearted people.
As an Activator you participate in voting for Ventures- the community chooses together. There's also access to community calls, workshops, and events, all with good-hearted capable people willing to put energy and joy into being the change in our world. Don't worry, there's no secret handshakes, just hugs. Learn More
Coralus is proof a more beautiful world is possible.
Coralus is an alternative economy with trust as our core currency.
Coralus is a working model of regenerative capital.
Launched in Canada in 2015 as SheEO, the visionary model for a new economy is now in the US, Australia, New Zealand and the UK. Originally an experiment in more equitable funding for women and nonbinary folk, Coralus quickly saw spillover benefits from their community-driven, trust-based ethos.
In 2022, they renamed themselves Coralus, reflecting their evolution from the individual (“SheEO”) to the collective (“Coralus”), and began inviting in other communities to iterate on their regenerative capital model.
“Coralus is beyond speculation, beyond theory, beyond policy statements and incubators. It’s the only place I know of to witness the new economy in action. And it's beautiful.”
Anastasia Mourogova Millin
Global Director and Co-Lead, Capital and Investments at Dark Matter Labs