Members of my Go Green Team are amazing people, and I like to highlight their accomplishments — especially when they’re achieved with assistance from Norwex. Last year, I joined about 50 other Norwex consultants and clients to help with a Hawaiian beach cleanup, and it’s exciting to see all Nicole continues to do to protect the environment there.
When Nicole Koranda and her family arrived in Hawaii with eight suitcases and little else, she was ready for an adventure, looking forward to exposing her children to one of the most beautiful spots on earth. Nicole had signed a 10-month contract to work as an occupational therapist in the local schools. Beyond that, the future was unclear.
But the Korandas soon fell in love with the weather, nature and culture of the Big Island. Seven years later, they still call it home.
“Coming from the ‘land of ten thousand lakes’ [Minnesota], I always had a passion for nature and the environment,” says Nicole. As they explored the island, she and her family became increasingly aware of environmental issues facing Hawaii. “You can’t help but worry about what actually happens to all the waste that we create on an island,” she says. “Where does it go?”
During a summer trip back to Minnesota, Nicole was introduced to Norwex. “My mom showed me the butter demo and as an occupational therapist working in schools, the idea of chemical-free cleaning really spoke to me,” she explains. Intrigued by the Norwex mission, she attended a party and walked away with the Household Package to take back to Hawaii.
Months later, when Nicole and a few other women were helping a friend to clean her house in preparation for a move, the advantages of Norwex and its business potential hit home.
“All the girls came with a ton of cleaning supplies, buckets, mops, paper towels, etc.,” she recalls. I just came with three cloths and left with three cloths. I didn’t need chemicals and I didn’t need to add anything to the landfill.” Nicole’s friends were inspired to make the switch to Norwex and Nicole ended up signing on as one of Hawaii’s first Norwex consultants in February 2012.
She booked two launch parties her first weekend and sold $2,000 worth of products. From there, her business quickly took off and today she is the top leader for Norwex sales in the state of Hawaii.
Around the same time as she was starting her business, Nicole came across an article in a local magazine about a cleanup effort at Kamilo Beach, also known as “Trash Beach” or “Plastic Beach”,” located on the Big Island’s southeast coast. Due to the currents, Kamilo Beach accumulates an astonishing amount of garbage and debris from all over the Pacific.
To Nicole, the article illustrated the importance of making eco-friendly choices and she started bringing it with her to Norwex parties. “I wanted people to see that global environmental problems are also effecting Hawaii,” she explains. “Plus, I wanted to show customers that I am passionate about protecting this land, even though I wasn’t born here.”
“I knew that this small organization could really benefit from the support,” she explains. Nicole created a video and a slideshow about the Hawaii Wildlife Fund with the help of her husband and submitted these as her nomination for the 2015 Norwex Charitable Awards. That year, was a thrilling year for Nicole at the Norwex National Conference in August: She earned a major promotion, was named the fourth top-selling consultant in the United States and also found out that the Hawaii Wild Life Fund would be receiving a $5,000 donation from Norwex.
Even more exciting, Norwex founder Debbie Bolton travelled to Hawaii later that fall to personally hand the check to the Wildlife Fund, which was then able to make much-needed repairs on four-wheel trucks used by volunteers to serve Kamilo Beach and other remote areas of the island.
Since first connecting with the Hawaii Wildlife Fund, Nicole has participated in several cleanup projects on Big Island beaches, including one last October where about 50 Norwex consultants and clients got together to pick up about 33 pounds of trash in just an hour. Once again, Norwex was walking the walk of environmental stewardship, not just talking the talk.
“It’s been so rewarding to be able to give back to this beautiful island that my family loves,” Nicoles says. “I am grateful that because of my work with Norwex, I can support local environmental efforts that really make a difference here.”
Norwex is currently accepting nominations for the 2017 Charitable Award. Just fill out and submit the Charitable Nomination Form by June 2 and make a difference for an organization that you are passionate about! The awards will be announced during Norwex’s National Conference, August 4-6, in Minneapolis.