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Hidden Gems: Meet Amelia Thomas of Resident Consulting

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amelia Thomas.

Hi Amelia, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
I started volunteering with different homelessness organizations during my undergrad at USC. One in particular was called Monday Night Mission (now Shower of Hope) and we would serve meals on Skid Row in DTLA. The founder of the organization, Mel Tillekeratne, would educate everyone on LA’s homelessness crisis and how there was much more to it than us just serving meals. He would say that people experiencing homelessness are often ignored by society and one of the most important things we should do while volunteering is asking their name and starting a conversation. They can go days without speaking to a single person. Mel would also provide resources for us to advocate for policies to help the crisis including Measure H. Simultaneously,

I was interning at different fashion companies and struggling with the idea of worrying about material items when LA is facing such a huge crisis. I thought it would be interesting to start a fashion company with purpose, which was the first iteration of Resident. A percentage of each sale went to different organizations that I volunteer with and the customer could see exactly how much of their purchase was going to that non-profit. Just as we were starting to gain momentum, the pandemic hit and selling clothes became increasingly difficult. During the summer of 2020, I started to have larger brands and companies reaching out to me loving the idea of Resident. They would ask me for help implementing social impact projects of their own, which sparked Resident’s pivot to social impact consulting. I realized I could make a much larger impact helping bigger companies use their resources and reach to do unique social impact projects. So far, this new strategy is going well with multiple consulting projects going at once! I want to make it easy for any company to get involved with measurable social impact because I truly believe doing good is good business.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
It has not been a smooth road, but I don’t think 2020 was for anyone! Before the pandemic started, I was doing multiple speaking engagements a month talking about Resident, I was signed up for multiple sustainable craft fairs in DTLA, and thinking about designing another collection. The pandemic forced my current pivot, but I am glad that it did. I learned how to be flexible and make the most of what we built by helping other companies make a bigger impact.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your business?
Resident is a social impact consulting company that helps brands and companies do measurable social impact projects. As people become more interested in associating their company with a cause, it can be daunting choosing which one or how to go about it. It can also be difficult for them to choose the correct organization to work with. Resident provides a consulting service to help companies identify a problem they would like to solve and finding the correct organization to partner with. We also come up with unique impact projects so they can see how big of a difference they are making. These include volunteer days, product donations, and fundraising campaigns. The companies know exactly how their money is helping that specific organization as well. We provide one-off or recurring projects based on the company’s needs.

Is there any advice you’d like to share with our readers who might just be starting out?
Just start! Day one or one day? You get to decide that. Brainstorming and testing your company can cost you little to no money so test, pitch, and ask for advice!

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