atlasGO - The fitness app that plants trees
In 2016, a start-up created in San Francisco's Silicon Valley by Thomas Querton, a young Belgian entrepreneur from Brussels, developed an application to convert sporting activities into donations for organisations and NGOs. It enables anyone to practise a sport, all while supporting a cause that is important to them through sponsor support.
In March of this year, Thomas and his partners launched a new offshoot of their mobile app, which brings together "sporting activity, reforestation and the fight against COVID-19". Thanks to the companies that have partnered with the project, #GO4Trees provides runners the opportunity to participate in the reforestation of the planet: every 4 miles (6.4 km) run equals the planting of one tree by One Tree Planted, a North American non-profit organisation which has partnered with atlasGO.
As many scientists have pointed out recently, there is a strong link between the destruction of the environment, including deforestation, and the multiplication of health crises, such as the recent COVID-19 outbreak. With #GO4Trees, atlasGO has added a new, environmentally conscious dimension to its operations and is helping to reduce the risk of pandemics.
A first challenge was set last month, with the goal of planting no fewer than 100,000 trees in California. According to Thomas Querton, the focus on a cause such as reforestation motivates the members of the atlasGO community even more. He, of course, does not want to stop there and is counting on setting new challenges.