Saki-Kaki

Saki-Kaki

Because I Care – Israel’s signature program, Saki-Kaki, has become a household name throughout Israel. Our vivid, yellow boxes with the unforgettable logo have not only reduced the amount of dog waste on Israel’s sidewalks – they’ve changed people’s minds about what was once an “unsolvable” problem.

Saki-Kaki’s familiar yellow boxes are everywhere in Israel – 91 cities and counting. But the vision started with one woman, Because I Care – Israel‘s founder June Stone.

When June immigrated to Israel from New York City in 1998, she was confronted with the stark contrasts in Tel Aviv. Vibrant people, modern architecture and elegant gardens were marred by graffiti, garbage and worst of all – dog waste everywhere you stepped. Building on her past work with New York’s beautification programs from the 1970s, June organized twelve of her neighbors into the Brenner Street Association in 2001 to clean up their neighborhood.

In 2002 the organization became a registered nonprofit and renamed itself, We Can Do It Better. It launched a pilot program, donating and installing fifteen eye-catching Saki-Kaki boxes across Tel Aviv sidewalks. Each box was emblazoned with a new logo that was both humorous and compelling. Inside were high-quality kaki bags produced from recycled materials, making it convenient for owners to clean up after their dogs. Bags also featured the standout logo and were cleverly dispensed so that owners could use just one at a time.

An instant hit, the bags made Israelis smile and became trendy to use. (The organization had succeeded in adapting their message for the Israeli psyche.)

We Can Do It Better was a one-woman operation in its first few years. June self-financed the nonprofit and handled all of its marketing, community outreach and office duties. In 2005 the Arison Foundation provided a grant enabling her to hire staff, increase inventory and expand outside Tel Aviv. That year she renamed the organization Because I Care – Israel, to better reflect its core messages of environmental awareness and social kindness. Positive media coverage followed, and Saki-Kaki soon became a household name.

Each model of Saki-Kaki boxes has improved over the previous version, minimizing the chance for wasted bags and enhancing protection from vandalism. Because I Care – Israel distributed over 5 million bags in 2010, and expansion continues throughout the country – in cities, Kibbutzim and Moshavim. The organization is excited to begin distributing their newly developed low-cost, biodegradable bags to municipalities in mid-2011.

Kirk Weisler, Corporate motivator and author  best describes the Saki-Kaki Program:

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