I so love companies that make giving back a big part of who they are. You know what I mean, like Blake Mycoskie and Toms. Who, by the way has a great collaboration with Target for the Holidays. I picked up a few things last week.
Giving gifts to those you love this holiday will feel extra good knowing you are helping some great people make a true difference in the lives of others down the street and around the world.
Here are a few items from inspiring businesses on my list this year.
Ashley Pittman – I had the opportunity to attend the preview of Ashley’s Spring ’15 line this week. What an inspiration she is.
Ashley Pittman jewelry is handmade in Kenya by more than 75 artisans, providing them with fair wages, expansion opportunities, and business development training. Designs feature repurposed horn, semiprecious gemstones, bronze and materials indigenous to East Africa. 10% of all profits fund the Ashley Pittman Foundation to help fund the Kamboo Dispensary and Kathiani Primary School in an area of Kenya particularly hard-hit by prolonged drought. Through the Foundation, the school has been provided with a source for clean, de-salinated drinking water, student uniforms, school supplies, hot lunches for the students, and teacher salaries. The dispensary serves a population of over 4,000 people who previously had no access to basic healthcare. These projects are built using volunteer labor from surrounding villages. It is the hope of Ashley to expand the area and scope that The Foundation is able to serve, affecting measurable change.
Unlock Hope – Such a positive message for the receiver but life changer for girls in Uganda.
In Uganda, young girls aren’t given the same chances as boys. Without access to education they often marry young, have large families that they are unable to care for, and are forced to work difficult jobs for very little pay. They believe educating these girls is the first step in ending a seemingly never ending cycle of poverty in Africa. To unlock something means to make something previously in-accessible available for use. Hope is defined as a desire of good accompanied with a belief that it is obtainable. To a young refugee in Uganda hope is an education. Unlock Hope has partnered with Think Humanity, an organization that runs a hostel in Hoima, Uganda for young refugee girls from all across Africa, many of whom are orphaned. By providing them with quality healthcare, good food to eat and a safe place to live they are enabling them to get an education. Why a Key Necklace? In Uganda, children often wear a key on a string around their neck. That key opens the small lock box that holds all of their belongings. When you buy one of their products you are helping to cover every single expense necessary for supporting these girls in their pursuit of an education. Health care, food, housing, utilities, transportation, support staff, school fees, clothing, uniforms, toiletries, school supplies, books and more are completely paid for – all thanks to you!
Let’s face it. We all know someone who needs reading glasses but finding a great pair isn’t easy. Agift certificate for reading glasses from Warby Parker is a great solution and help people with vision needs in developing countries. Almost one billion people worldwide lack access to glasses, which means that 15% of the world’s population cannot effectively learn or work. To help address this problem, Warby Parker partners with non-profits like VisionSpring to ensure that for every pair of glasses sold, a pair is distributed to someone in need. Their process is really neat. Choose 5 styles, they send them to you to try on, send them back letting them know your choice and they send you a new pair with your strength lens.
A big fan of giving books as gifts, I LOVE this idea! Amy Bean founded Tiny Bee Gift Co. to offer meaningful, personalized gifts for little ones while giving back to the community. For every book you purchase, they give a second book to a school library in need or the school library of your choice. Gift One. Give One.
Also, note that 20% of proceeds from purchases from The Lush List shop and any links above this holiday season will go to help feed the homeless in Dallas through Soul Church.
Photos via company websites