social sustainability initiative

Living with a green heart



The Living with a Green Heart is an initiative spearheaded by three forward-thinking Slovenian companies, namely Riko, the Sophia Academy, and Knauf Insulation. These market leaders are united in their commitment and calling to promote and build upon existing awareness about the exquisite uniqueness of our natural environments, and about how to work with and in them sustainably and responsibly. Alongside the common themes of responsibility and proactive response to the constant changes occurring globally, these companies have also outlined the need to understand the individual and how each of us can assume an active role on the path towards a more mature and sustainable future. Only people who are well informed and who lead full and rewarding lives can serve as ambassadors for the changes we need to make in society and in our relationship with the environment. 

It is an activation, both in our professional and private lives, that leads to a more soothing and sustainable pulse, insights, and products. It is an awareness that was born by listening attentively, both to employees in our partner companies and to our fellow community members who identify in some way or another with the products our partners manufacture.

Living with a Green Heart is a pulse that beats along with our own discoveries, with our relationship with and responsibility to the environment, with the exciting insights we glean from meaningful conversations with over 160 groups of managers, experts, and implementers from companies all over the world. The effects of sustainable environmental and economic development are insignificant if not bolstered by the sustainable development of society and culture, in which humans, humanity, and well-being itself are the focus of societal endeavors.

In light of the changes thrust upon all of us by the pandemic in 2020 and 2021, we have developed an approach to merging and activating all the elements of sustainable development in such a way that the rhythm of both corporate and social environment become friendlier and more durable. Our common pledges, joined under the emblem of the green heart, will serve as both the small step and the giant leap we need towards sustainability in a humane and human future. 

And we aim to share this giant leap with the whole world!

The Living with a Green Heart initiative focuses on employees and motivated individuals who aim to discover and internalize their responsibility to their fellow citizens, to nature, and to the environment where they live and work. People who realize that changes must occur within us before we can begin taking action to change the world around us.

You can feel the beating of the green heart and its values in the work processes and products of the companies that stand behind it, as well as the endeavors these companies support. We make it possible for the well aware to acquire and make use of sustainable products, crafted in harmony with the environment where we work, in harmony with nature, and with the humans that brought them to life. Wooden houses, wooden walls and roofs, and an academy with an attentive ear turned towards manifesting people’s personal and professional potentials all serve to express and embody our values and support the process of broadcasting our story into everyday life.

At 2 high-profile events over the next year, we will be presenting the life philosophy that empowered and awoken people should be the very purpose and focus of sustainable development. The first one comes this September at the Bled Strategic Forum and then, in January and February 2021, at the oldest world fair on Earth, the Expo 2020 in Dubai. 


Within a year, we aim for as many Slovenian and foreign companies as possible to join the Living with a Green Heart initiative. Our goal is to create a friendlier and more responsible environment for employees at all levels and in all aspects. Our experience and insights, gained and put into practice on a daily basis, will help us in our quest to change and improve our relationships, as well as the way we work, collaborate, and coexist within our environments. We want to produce and provide products that embody our sustainable mindset and that help our customers live in an environmentally friendly way that respects their neighbors. We aim in this way to cocreate a more informed and kinder future for ourselves and those that come after us. 

A dedicated and proactive collective is only as strong as the people that comprise it. Only together can we manifest all the potentials teeming within us. Manifest them in the things we create and present to the market, in the things used by people who place their trust in us. 

Just as companies differ from one country to the next, so too are individual workplaces comprised of a true rainbow of diversity. Living with a Green Heart joints together sustainably minded companies that realize how important it is to focus on human beings as the center of sustainable efforts and development. Only those that are satisfied and full of life can effect the changes in our environment and society that are necessary for a bright and lasting future. All of us are responsible for contributing to the necessary changes, and we all need to decide conclusively whether or not we want to be the coauthors of a green new world.  


The Green Heart Fell Asleep

Just like every morning, that day in the east the sun timidly cast the first traces of its light over the horizon. An attentive observer might have thought the sun was embarrassed, as if it didn’t dare to break the spell cast by the night. But the dawn was stronger yet. From minute to minute, it shone all the more convincingly. Over the crested hilltops the first dappling rays burst brilliantly, awakening the birds and prompting their symphonic song. A miracle occurred before the eyes of humans and animals alike. Something was reborn, just as it is every day. A birth attended by the awakening butterflies, beers, ladybugs, ants, lizards, squirrels, deer, and all the other animals, as well as by flower blossoms whose dewy petals upon up to greet the sun and life itself. Wind rustled through the treetops and playfully whispered to them the news that a new day was here. 

The Green Heart Trembled 

It trembled in part because no human being noticed the day’s rebirth. Countless eyes failed to behold the crack of dawn and the beauty it brings. The day’s rebirth failed to bring them joy, tranquility, fulfillment, and opportunity. Instead of the birdsong, the sun’s rays, and the blooming flowers, the humans awoke to worry, stress, and… emptiness. Instead of listening to their hearths, they heard merely the resounding echo of the raging everyday that awaited them, like a ravenous beast lying in ambush, day in and day out. 

They entered the new day with no will and no hope. 

The Green Heart Dared to Dream 

But not all of them. He woke up with the sun, just the way he liked it. To observe, to listen, to marvel. Barefoot, he stepped onto his balcony, his natural safe haven smack in the middle of the concrete jungle, which sucked the world dry of creativity, curiosity, and desire. But not his. Dressed in plants gathered from the nearby forest, he leaned his cheek against the wall of his home. It wasn’t barren and cold, but warm and smelled divinely of the wood it was carved from. 

He stayed like this for a few moments… and then he felt it. He felt the call of the wild, the beckoning of the forest, knowing that he just had to follow it. His mind was made up in an instant and he was gone, just as so many times before that. Turning his back to the muted gray, he faced the greenery that was just bursting with its sincerity and permanence. 

At that moment nothing seemed more important to him than satisfying his desire and his inner nature. 

The Green Heart Calmed Down

Most people’s everyday routine went full-steam ahead, completely separate from their true wishes and desires. Wishes that they weren’t even able to name or put a tangible finger on. Endlessly repeating the same steps treading the same paths exhausted them and make them strangers in their own skin.

He had been no different one day.  

But things had changed by now. 

When he folded himself into Mother Nature’s embrace and heard how she breathes, he knew he was home. 

He took a sip of cold water from the stream. His gaze followed the playful flight of a passing butterfly. A soaring eagle’s call pierced his ears. As the wind caressed his skin, he got goosebumps. 

Everything was just as it should be. 

The Green Heart Found Its Place

But it wasn’t always like that. Even he had fought his struggles against his own self one day. He had stopped feeling, observing, and noticing. He wanted to help himself somehow, to make a stand, but it seemed like he was more and more powerless with every passing day. Eventually one day, while he sat trapped in his tin can in the middle of rush hour, a leaf from a nearby tree fluttered in through his car window. All that had been gray, dull, and subdued suddenly disappeared. All that remained was the color and shape of the leaf that had enchanted, soothed, and beckoned to him. That’s when he realized he needed someone not just to listen to him, but someone to actually hear him. 

Someone that would help him find a path he’d never tread before. 

Someone that would help him get back to basics. 

The Birth of the Green Heart 

He found that person, and it was easier than he’d imagined. Partly because he wanted to so much and, when he returned, a new desire had already taken hold within him. 

That desire was to help and empower people, to lend a helping hand and a new opportunity to those people who were still stuck where he had recently been. 

To those people who wanted it as much as he had. 

He did some soul-searching and tried to find exactly what it was that he could contribute. 

What he found was his green heart. 

A green heart that connects people. 

That connects the world around us with our inner essence. 

That highlights and amplifies that which is a part of us all. 

That connects tradition with the modern day. 

The present with the future. 

The current moment with sustainability. 

Sustainability with existence. 

Existence with an open ear and keen awareness. 

And awareness with coexistence. 

The Green Heart Is a Refuge 

A smile came to his face as the breeze caressed him. He pulled out a pad and pencil, sat on the lush moss, and leaned back against the trunk of a tree. 

Then he started creating. 

Creating that which would help him and lend a helping hand to others who wanted it as much as he did.

Creating to the beat of a green heart. 

The forms of wooden houses took shape on his paper, framed in green walls and covered by green roofs. He sketched the skylines of unique urban ecosystems, thriving with life that which was founded on understanding, acceptance, coexistence, and sustainability. Wanting to preserve the same bright and friendly mornings and days for our descendants, just as we inherited from our predecessors.

Ecosystems created from natural and sustainable materials that never taxed the environment but complemented it and ensured its continued existence. 

An existence for which we all must strive. 


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