Thursday, December 19, 2013

Gifts That Give Back [gift guide]

If you haven’t checked out yesterday’s random gift guide I highly suggest you give it a look.  There’s lots of good stuff in there if you’re in need of a last minute gift idea!

Today I wanted to share with you some companies that I really love… not because they asked me to or because I have any sort of connection to them, just because I believe in what they stand for.

I feel like giving gifts from companies that give back to others in need really reflects the reason of the season…and I love to support them as much as I can!

We all know about companies like Toms, which I also love… but I wanted to focus on some different ones that you may not have heard of yet.

Falling Whistles

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Falling whistles is a campaign for peace in Congo. 
“In 2008, a young traveler named Sean traveled through eastern Congo to learn about a war he knew nothing about. Just a few days later he found himself in a military encampment, where he met five boys being held prisoner by the national army. The boys had been child soldiers, taken from their homes and forced to fight for two different rebel groups, until one night they escaped and ran to the national army for refuge. Now in the hands of their own military, they were being treated as enemies of the state.  He spent the day with the boys, trading stories, laughter and tears. One boy told him of children too small to carry guns being sent to the frontlines, armed with only a whistle. After he and his partner worked with the UN to have the boys released, he went home that night and wrote the Falling Whistles journal. A single story of a single day. It was originally sent to about 80 friends and family, who forwarded it around the world. Thousands of strangers wrote back asking: what can we do? We sell the whistle as a symbol of protest and ask you;
Be a whistleblower for peace.”

My favorite item: Gunmetal colored whistle necklace found: here
 

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Market Colors

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Market Colors, Inc. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to mitigating financial hardships and improving the quality of life of the impoverished in Africa
”We started Market Colors in August of 2011. Throughout our trips to Malawi and Kenya, we came face to face with “poverty” in a new way. What we previously thought was just a distant land became a place filled with friends and some of our favorite, and most difficult, memories. Pictures in Time Magazine sent us back to visits with refugee women across East Africa. We found ourselves awake at night, restless… anxious and willing to do whatever God called us to do.  We sell products made by groups in Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Namibia, and Uganda. Some products we carry are: purses, laptop cases, iPad carriers, scarves, rugs, and accessories. Our competitive edge lies in the fact that each product is 100% handmade and accompanied by a product card, providing details about the African craftsman who made it.”

My favorite item: Namibia Necklace found: here

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FashionABLE


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The fashionABLE mission is to create sustainable business for Africans so they aren't dependent upon charity, but instead earn the dignity of a job. “We offer opportunity to everyone, with a primary focus on empowering women. When we invest in a woman, statistics demonstrate that she will have a life-changing impact on her family and community... and herself.”

My favorite item: Eden Infinity Scarf found: here

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Mudlove

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“In an attempt to deny self, MudLOVE was build on the idea of giving back. Starting with nothing more than an old stamp set, a box of clay, and an unadvised business plan of giving 20% of all sales to clean drinking water projects in Africa, MudLOVE was born, and God-inspired creation emerged. The hope of MudLOVE is to be an inspiration to people, not just providing Africans with clean water, but also encouraging and loving broken people. What one may lack in clean water, another may lack in love.”

My favorite item: Beloved Band found: here

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Krochet Kids International

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We empower people to rise above poverty.  We believe in the capabilities of people. Our goal is to holistically equip people living in poverty with the skills, education, and resources to change their circumstances forever. Work provides worth. Education breeds innovation. Mentorship nourishes relationships. Through this multi-faceted and measured approach we work with each beneficiary to create a path toward independence.  Every product we make is hand-signed by the person who made it.”

My favorite item: Llama Tee found: here

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This is just a few of many wonderful companies I have heard of that use their influence to do good.  I hope you’ll keep them in mind this holiday season. :)

What are your favorite gifts that “give back?”

5 comments:

  1. I love that scarf and those beloved bands! Love how these give back too. :)

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  2. those are WONDERFUL! what a great idea. i loooove fashionABLE :)

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  3. I LOVE my Falling Whistles necklace. My sister got one for me years ago and it's a treasure to me. People always ask if I'm wearing a 'rape whistle' (awkward!), but it allows me to share the story and talk about the company. So great!

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  4. And this is now where all of my money is going to disappear too! I think you know that we both share this love of companies like this! (We've talked about fashionABLE before I believe) Well, these are just some great sounding companies and I now want a whistle. ha

    I'm happy to say that I just purchased my first hat from KrochetKids!! It was made by a lady in Uganda and every time I look at her signature, I just smile and wish that we could be friends. :)

    Also, I love my TOMS and sport them 97% of the time. :)

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  5. what a wonderful post-- i'm impressed that you know so much about charitable giving, too - props to you! i'm a fan of falling whistles and mudlove, but i'd never heard of fashion able- now that i've seen that scarf, however, things are about to change :)

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