You can gift any designer candle, but how much better if the one you choose provides solar light to under-serviced areas? You can buy the latest doll, but a handmade one that helps children around the world grow up strong is even better. You see the point: Your purchasing can power great causes. Here are seventeen unique gifts that give back.
The Gift: A contemporary kantha cotton quilt hand-stitched by artisans escaping the sex trade in India.
The Impact: A portion of proceeds support workers’ health care benefits, design training, and education.
The Gift: A beautiful, glass-bead warrior bracelet crafted by marginalized Maasai women in Tanzania.
The Impact: Makers receive twice the average national pay, retirement funds, paid maternity leave and vacation, health insurance, subsidized lunches, and access to legal, hygiene, literacy, and economics courses.
The Gift: Handsome, unisex frames to keep you from squinting in the field.
The Impact: Your favorite optical company makes monthly donations to VisionSpring, a non-profit that trains low-income men and women to sell ultra affordable (and stylish) glasses in underserved communities worldwide.
The Gift: Protection from the elements in the form of a tan fedora made from salvaged wool.
The Impact: The Christian-affiliated non-profit syphons all proceeds to the cause of your choice: providing uniforms to school kids in Kenya and Haiti, or supplying work clothes to new graduates of the Atlanta-based job training program they fund.