Revised December 5, 2020
This time of year we are focused on finding the right gifts for people we know so we often forget about those we don't. Giving to others less fortunate or to causes that benefit animals or the environment is a great way to celebrate the season as well. Not only are we celebrating our cherished holiday traditions, we are giving to those who can't.
There are a lot of great organizations that can help us do this, some of which we may not be familiar with. These are a few good ones to check out in 2020.
BEST FRIENDS ANIMAL SOCIETY. This is a non-profit animal welfare organization whose mandate is to try to end the killing of cats and dogs in shelters by 2025. This year they are offering a yoga mat with traction on both sides for $42.00. 100% of the proceeds from the sale of each mat goes to saving the lives of homeless pets. Such a great way to gift and give back, don't you think? Available online on their website.
CHARITEAS. Chariteas is an American tea company that sources premium quality tea from around the world by working with sustainable tea farmers. Part of the purchase of their tea also goes towards planting new trees. Their online website boasts a good variety of tea starting at just $7.00 per tin. They have seven partner locations all across the U.S. you can visit in person, or you can order the tea on their website. Enjoy a cup of wholesome tea knowing you are contributing to sustainable farming and environmental practices.
COYUCHI. Coyuchi is an American clothing company that uses a Fair Trade certified factory to manufacture organic clothing. They do this by recycling 98% of it's wastewater and recycling their own products to produce new ones. They have also invested $50,000 in The White Buffalo Land Trust which supports regenerative agriculture. Coyuchi is currently offering an organic cotton ladies romper, a bath robe, and a variety of organic cotton towels and sheets that make great gifts. Their products can be found in specialty shops all across California, or online.
HEY DEWY. The provider of portable facial humidifiers that keep your skin and sinuses hydrated are giving 10% of the sales of their humidifiers to The Water Project that provides sub-Saharian Africans access to clean, safe water. Only $39.00 gets you one. Go to heydewy.com to order.
LUSH. Lush is a company known for their ethically sourced organic ingredients, particularly cocoa butter, and their Fair Trade practices with respect to The Farmer Trust program in eastern Congo. The Farmer Trust program is instrumental in revitalizing the struggling cocoa industry in the Congo by educating farmers on how to produce cocoa that meets global standards and interests international buyers such as Lush Cosmetics. Cocoa butter from the eastern Congo region is now a high quality product thanks to these efforts. Lush stores are located in shopping centres all across Canada, as well as stand-alone brick and mortar shops.
Michael KORS. This year Michael KORS has created a denim tote bag called the Watch Hunger Stop LOVE Denim Tote Bag for $78.00. This tote is a great gift not only because it's reusable but because 100% of the profits from the sale of each bag will provide 100 school meals through the United Nations World Food Program (WFP). Such a big win and a small price to pay for all the good it will do!
NONIE and SophieGrace. Nonie is a ready-to-wear ethical clothing brand based in Calgary, founded by Nina Kharey. This year she is partnering with SophieGrace, another Canadian brand, to offer a 100% cotton face mask, M(ask) Me, in support of victims of violence and domestic abuse. $10.00 of the sale of each $30.00 mask will go to a variety of such organizations. For details about these organizations go to maskmecanada.com. To order the mask go to sophiegrace.com. You will be staying safe and helping others in the process!
NORDSTROM. This year Nordstrom is offering the Bliss Plush Throw for $49.50 which, if purchased before December 31st, will donate a portion of the proceeds to Operation Warm, a non-profit that provides brand new high quality coats to children who like to play outside in the winter. Go to nordstrom.ca to order.
PURDY'S. Purdy's is a well-known Canadian chocolate company but did you know it supports sustainable farming by working with partner organizations that donate to clean water and healthy living projects in communities where their cocoa is sourced? Giving back to these communities is paramount to their success. Purdy's chocolate shops can be found in shopping centres in major cities across Canada.
THE BODY SHOP. The Body Shop Holiday Gift Collections continue to support their efforts at reforestation and the protection of endangered species, particularly in Armenia and England where they seek to protect ten million square metres of forest and re-introduce wild species. The Body Shop has also been instrumental in banning animal testing in cosmetic products by gathering over 8 million signatures in a petition that has made it's way to the United Nations. They use fair trade practices to source ingredients from Ethiopia and Ecuador. A cult favorite, this feel-good brand keeps on giving year after year.
VANS. One of Canada's favorite shoe and apparel companies, VANS is going out of their way this year to donate 100% of the proceeds of sales of their 2020 Checkerboard Day T-Shirt to the Vans Checkerboard Fund at the Tide's Foundation. This fund donates a minimum of $1 Million to ten global charities for creative programs that help people cope with stress and mental health challenges. Order the t-shirt online at vans.ca for $40.00.
Gifts that give back are such a win-win! They're affordable to purchase and help so many people. Plus, the more of them you buy the greater the impact, making the feel-good factor multiply exponentially!