Not for Profit Store Launched


Amazon announced on March 8, 2010 that they would be keeping all of the proceeds from the bookstore for themselves (read more)The original post announcing the opening of the bookstore is below:

We finally got around to updating our recommendations for Costa Rica books and creating the much anticipated Costa Rica Guide Packing List – Shopping Edition.

We never expected big profits on book sales. Amazon was just an easy way to keep cover photos and prices up to date on books we like to recommend, but as our websites grow more popular it’s starting to add up. We’d like our recommendations to stay unbiased by sales pressure so we’ve decided to donate 100% of the proceeds from the Amazon sales to community and conservation projects in Costa Rica.

How the not for profit bookstore donations work

Based on growth over the last five years we hope to raise at least $2,000.00 on about $32,000.00 in sales in 2010. It could be a lot more if the idea catches on and people spread the word through blogs, tweets, facebook and websites.

Who gets the money?

Honestly, we haven’t decided. We just re-did the bookstore and decided to donate the profits this week so we haven’t worked out all the details yet. We know some organizations that could benefit and have asked friends in Costa Rica for recommendations. If you’ve got a suggestion please feel free to add it as a comment below.

One idea is to buy books! Some rural schools in Costa Rica have pretty minimal libraries and a couple hundred new books could have a big impact. We know book distributors that may sell to us at wholesale and a furniture shop to build bookshelves for cost which would make the money go even further.

Teachers and librarians could pick out shelves full of books their kids wouldn’t otherwise have access to.

How can we guarantee the profit from your purchase will be donated?

The short answer is we can’t. Toucan Maps Inc. is a for-profit corporation and doesn’t have non-profit auditing; besides Amazon strictly prohibits tracking customers so it would be impossible for you to tell if your purchase ultimately results in a contribution.

Basically you just have to trust us that it’s not worth risking our reputation for a couple thousand dollars in Amazon commissions. Besides, if we wanted to keep the money we’d just erase all this stuff about donations and keep it like we used to before we decided to donate it.

Go to the Costa Rica Bookstore

Go to the Costa Rica Packing List – Shopping Edition

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