Ecommerce News / How to Sell Online

Here’s How You Can Help Fund the Santa Barbara Coastline Cleanup: Buy This Shirt

Liz Kelley / 2 min read

At Bigcommerce, we’re lucky to work with a number of businesses that were started with the humble yet ambitious goal to further their impact on the world through acts of charity. Following the oil spill in California this past week, we wanted to take a moment to highlight one of these incredible businesses in particular, launched with the hope of raising ample amounts of money to fund beach cleanups –– Coastal Playground.

On May 19, an oil pipeline ruptured along the Santa Barbara coastline, spilling more than 101,000 gallons of crude oil into Refugio State Beach. The U.S. Coast Guard predicts that it will take months before the 20 miles of affected beach is restored. In addition to the harsh environmental impact the oil spill has had on the beaches, a sea lion, nine pelicans and countless fish have been killed. The impact is worse than initially expected, and the community is coming together to help.

And Coastal Playground is one big part of that community.

The company sells apparel, totes and custom ocean art from local photographers, donating its profits back to the clean-up efforts after giving a share of the revenue to support the artists that donate their work.

“It’s giving people ownership of their purchase, especially now that people are paying attention to how they spend their money,” said Andrew Sneddon, founder of Coastal Playground, referring to the rising pressure on businesses to be more socially responsible and rethink value creation as a long-term investment in society. “We empower people to help communities with their purchase and I think they really dig that.”

Working closely with the Blue Business Council, a network of companies working to protect California’s coasts, ocean, bays, rivers and streams, and the Santa Barbara Channelkeeper, which monitors the health of marine habitats in the Santa Barbara Channel, Coastal Playground will continue to share updates on the situation through its social channels, posting additional volunteer opportunities for all those who wish to get directly involved to help sustain one of the most biodiverse beaches in the world.

“Once you support a cause, you become that cause,” says Sneddon. “We use our tools on Bigcommerce to bring together a community of people that care deeply about sustainability.”

If you’re interested in supporting a small business and donating to the Santa Barbara coastline cleanup efforts, check out Coastal Playground’s “Never Again” shirt, now available for pre-order at just under $30. The company is donating 100% of the proceeds to the Refugio Oil Spill cleanup efforts to bring the beaches and marine environment back to their original beauty.


Liz Kelley

Liz Kelley

Liz is a PR professional and freelance writer. Previously, she worked at one of the largest independent global PR agencies, and advised Fortune 500 clients on their media relations and digital communications. You can follow her on Twitter @lizkelley.

View all posts by Liz Kelley
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