Canton native launches socially conscious web service

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Lucas DeBarros knew he wanted to be an entrepreneur since his sophomore year of high school. That was the year he began to write a list in a notebook of all of his ideas for a business that he would start some day. That day arrived this past April when DeBarros launched Elevated Providers, an online service that allows clients to search for socially conscious service providers.

Lucas DeBarros

Lucas DeBarros

One of three children born to Bart and Joesina DeBarros, Lucas DeBarros grew up in Canton and attended the Hansen School before transferring to private schools. He graduated from Bentley University and now works as a legislative aide for Massachusetts Representative Evandro C. Carvalho (D-Boston), helping with community events, doing legislative research, and working with constituents to resolve issues. “They typically call us when they need us most,” he said.

But DeBarros never gave up on his plan to be a business owner, filling page after page of his notebook with potential ideas. “I’ve always wanted to do something on my own,” he said.

Once he decided to begin Elevated Providers, he created a plan, met with people, and ran his ideas by networks of likeminded business people he had met at Bentley.

Elevated Providers allows clients who are looking for a service provider to match their own passion for particular social causes with that of a professional photographer, DJ, business account manager, youth program developer, real estate agent, sports development specialist, personal trainer, academic counselor, web developer, IT provider, or customized invitation designer.

As noted on the website, “Consumers want to feel good about their purchases and where they spend their money. The issue is not that there is a lack of companies and professionals with strong morals or values. The issue is that there is no vehicle that allows people to find them. [Elevated Providers is] seeking to change that.”

The Elevated Providers website has a page for each service provider with a photograph of the provider of their work, their contact information, their top social cause, a biography written by DeBarros, and a personal statement written by the service provider. There are currently 17 service providers in the Boston area listed on Elevated Providers, most of whom are family members and friends of DeBarros or connected to his Bentley network.

The list of causes includes LGBQT rights, clean water, Black Lives Matter, climate change issues, anti-gentrification, youth development, homelessness, world vision, and immigrant rights. Potential clients can scroll through the information about the service providers and contact them directly without paying any fees at this time.

“My goal right now is to limit the barriers,” DeBarros said, explaining that he is testing the viability of his plan.

There is currently no advertising on the site, but if DeBarros does add it to the site, he said that he would donate 10 percent of the profits to different charities.

DeBarros sees Elevated Providers as a positive situation, one that helps both clients and providers. “I want to create a sense of community,” he said. “I want to uplift other people that are entrepreneurs.”

DeBarros acknowledged that finding service providers is the hardest challenge he faces with his business. But he has been encouraged by the fact that service providers have contacted him directly. “They reached out to me,” he said. “That’s an ‘Ah ha!’ moment. I could actually do something that people could get behind.”

DeBarros hopes to double the number of service providers in Boston by the end of the year and is also working to build a community of socially conscious service providers in New York, Miami, and Los Angeles. For more information, go to elevatedproviders.com.

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