ME to WE: A social enterprise enabling people to do good through their everyday choices
Founded in 2009 to provide economic opportunity in WE Village communities and a sustainable source of funding for WE Charity, ME to WE has grown into a global force for good.
ME to WE provides two levels of benefits to support the work of WE Charity. Firstly, ME to WE creates employment and economic empowerment for over 2,000 people in WE Village communities around the world, including via artisanal and Fairtrade products and global service trips. This is critical to the WE Villages pillar of Economic Opportunity, and enables WE Charity to achieve economically sustainable development in countries around the world. Secondly, ME to WE’s charter requires that it donates a minimum of 50 percent of its profits annually to WE Charity. For the past five years, ME to WE has donated on average over 90 percent of profits to WE Charity. The balance of funds are reinvested into the social enterprise to grow its sustainability, including its recent investment to launch Fairtrade chocolate to create economic opportunity in the WE Villages country of Ecuador. Since 2009, ME to WE has donated $20 million in cash and cost offsetting in-kind donations to WE Charity.
With ME to WE’s primary function to support the mission and operating costs incurred by its partner, WE Charity, the two organizations operate separately, as required to follow Canadian Revenue Agency rules, in a structure established by Torys and Miller Thompson. In order to ensure proper governance, financial accountability and overwhelming benefit to WE Charity, ME to WE has been reviewed by relevant government agencies (including the Ontario Public Guardian Trustee) and external experts (auditors, Board of Directors and a former Justice of The Supreme Court of Canada). ME to WE’s socially responsible practices and supply chains have undergone independent reviewed by groups such as B Labs, Mission Measurement and the Fairtrade Foundation. Mission Measurement’s 2018 review stated that ME to WE is: “not only operating within established industry guidelines and practices, but based on our market research and analysis of peer social enterprises, it may well be setting the industry standard globally for best practices in the field of social entrepreneurship.”