A pet project – and then some

The White City Laundry is squeaky clean and caring, too.

The White City Laundry (photo credit: FACEBOOK)
The White City Laundry
(photo credit: FACEBOOK)
In this day and age, the concept of social responsibility among businesses both large and small is increasingly prevalent, with customers often wanting enterprises to engage in actions that further social welfare beyond the interests of the company.
While this concept is still relatively new in Israel compared to the US, for example, it is gaining momentum here. Such businesses are to be applauded and encouraged, as it is well known that opening a business and keeping it operating in this country is not an easy feat.
One example of such a business is the White City Laundry at 30 King George Avenue (opposite Meir Park) in Tel Aviv.
The laundry, which opened its doors at the beginning of December, is a laundromat with a different ambiance from that of the majority of launderettes in Israel, which tend to be rather barren and soulless.
Established by Paul Caruso, a new immigrant from the US and former lone soldier in the Nahal Brigade, the White City Laundry aims to revolutionize the self-service laundromat industry in Tel Aviv (and perhaps all of Israel). In addition to wanting to create a place where people would enjoy themselves while waiting for their clothes to be washed, Caruso believes in helping to make the world a better place. Therefore, he decided to donate 5 percent of his profits each month to a different animal rescue foundation in Israel. Every time a customer does a wash or dry at the laundry, NIS 1 is donated to help abandoned and/or abused animals in Israel.
“I’ve always believed in giving back to make the world a better place. Whether you can lend a helping hand, give a shekel or give a million shekels, helping those in need is an important part of life. And anyone who believes that can truly make a positive difference in the world, no matter how small it may seem – everything counts,” Caruso says.
“My dream since I was a kid has always been to open my own animal rescue shelter on a large amount of land where the animals aren’t caged and can roam in relative freedom,” he continues. “I’ve rescued/ fostered over 20 animals since I was a child, so helping animals has always been extremely important to me. I decided to donate 5% of all profits from my business because even if I can feed 30 animals a month by this donation, that is 30 more animals that will eat that month.
“Any business I start in the future will be the same – at least 5% donated to charity. My true hope is that other business owners will follow my lead and do the same.”
Caruso will choose a different non-kill rescue foundation in Israel every month. At the start, he will choose through research; but once there is more activity on his Facebook page, he would like to do a vote each month to decide on the recipient. He emphasizes that he would also be glad to hear from any animal organization in need.
The White City Laundry’s inaugural donation went to the Imutz Klavim – Chaverim LeChayim (Friends4Life) nonprofit organization, which was delighted and honored to be the first recipient of the donation.
In addition to establishing a caring and giving business, Caruso also placed great importance on creating a customer- friendly environment (for humans, as well as canines, which are also welcome) and a place where it would be pleasant to spend a few hours while waiting for one’s clothes to be washed.
The White City Laundry has huge hand-painted pieces of wood with unique art by a young Israeli artist, wooden floors and an inviting color of paint on the walls. Perhaps most importantly for customers, who are most likely tourists or students, there is free Wi- Fi. There is also a library with books in many languages that can be perused, great music playing all day, a whiteboard for customers to write their questions and comments and an overall relaxed and homey vibe where it is fun to hang out and easy to forget that you’re waiting for your clothes.
Caruso, who firmly believes that a business reflects its owner, did all the work on the place himself, as it was very important to him to build something that he could be proud of and that his customers would love. Customers also save approximately 60% of the cost of sending their laundry out by doing it at his establishment.
So if you want to have clean clothes and a good feeling about yourself for making a small difference, actually enjoy the time spent doing laundry and save money, check out the White City Laundry. And if you’re a dog owner, bring your pet along for the experience.
Animal rescue foundations that want to contact Caruso regarding becoming a recipient of his monthly donation can do so through the White City Laundry Facebook page or by emailing paul@canine-capital.com.
If you have a business that donates some of its profits to charity on a regular basis and are interested in perhaps appearing in ‘The Jerusalem Post,’ contact the writer at kerenspreiskel@gmail.com.