18 Ways To Double Your Gift Power

next time you buy a gift -  your money goes to changing, maybe even saving a life ...instead of contributing to a corporate CEO's multi-million dollar salary!
Here we list 18 gift ideas that make a big positive impact out there in the world in addition to putting that smile of delight on your loved one's face.

1 Fair Trade

A sweatshop-free alternative to mass produced goods. There are many beautiful hand-made fair trade objects to choose from: fashion, table linens, home decor, accessories, jewelry, food, coffee, flowers. Check out Fair Trade Federation, World Fair Trade Organization, Fair Trade Canada for the list of fair trade shops and online retailers.

2 Crowdfund a Cool Idea 

We found some terrific cutting edge gift ideas on crowdfunding sites - a smart carry-on that can be tracked with your phone;  a smart wallet that's almost impossible to lose; TrackR - device, so you never lose your keys, or your phone and can always find your car in any parking lot ( Indiegogo); wearable art; clever fashion accessories (Kickstarter) - your gift will not only be unique, but will support innovators and budding entrepreneurs. 

3 Ethical Chocolate  

There are over one million children working on cocoa farms in Ghana and Ivory Coast, in dangerous conditions, in the worst form of child labor.  When you buy chocolate from Ethical chocolate companies - your sweet treat is that much sweeter knowing that you support the end of child labor.  
Ethical Chocolate Companies


4 Educate Girls with Social Gem Ethical Jewelry 

A true 'statement jewelry' - and a big social R.O.I. (return on investment). Educating girls is one of the most effective ways to eradicate poverty, increase GDP of developing countries and double their social capital. Social Gem commits to educating girls all the way to university. And it's 'direct-impact'; when you buy a piece of Social Gem Ethical Jewelry, you can track the progress of the student who directly benefits from your purchase. 

5 Membership to a Museum or a Zoo

Family memberships are a much better deal than individual ones.  The whole family can have a wonderful outing and at the same time support cultural institution in your city.

6 TOMS Marketplace

Much more than shoes, TOMS Marketplace offers wonderful array of ethical gifts for women, men, kids, home + bath, paper goods... All are life-changing and address multitude of social ills.


is a for-profit social enterprise founded in 2008 by Canadian brothers Craig Kielburger and Marc Kielburger that provides socially responsible products and services and donates half of its profits to the charity Free the Children.  MeToWe.com

Shop With Meaning 

is chock-full of great gift ideas from several companies pursuing social enterprise one-for-one giving business model. From health and beauty to socks - you just might find something for everyone on your list! ShopWithMeaning.com

Buy from a Local Artist 

Supporting local artists goes a long way to creating a vibrant cultural life on our planet. Visit local marketplaces, many open just for the holiday season, and discover their rich, unique offerings.

10 Daily Deal Sites

I know, I know what you're thinking! How does that change lives? But we're talking doubling your gift power, and some offerings on daily deal sites can make great gifts. For example you can buy a spa experience for a friendand for yourself, do it together, et voila - double gift! 

11 FIGS Threads For Threads

Is there a doctor in the crowd? On your list? This wonderful organization sells good looking scrubs and supports medical professionals in impoverished areas of the world. Many are poorly compensated for their work and dedication. Your gift is sure to make a big difference. Figs

12 Warby Parker

Give a gift of sight. Their very stylish eyeglasses and sunglasses will do the most discerning fashionista proud. Not least because for every pair they sell, a pair is donated to someone in need. Such a little thing as eyeglasses we take for granted! Imagine not being able to see because a pair of glasses is out of reach for a lot of people in impoverished countries. warbyparker.com

13 TheNakedHippie 

An edgy t-shirt company that invests 100% of it's profits into micro loans that help people in developing countries supportthemselves and their families by starting or growing small businesses.

14 Freeset 

Freeset helps stop human trafficking through sale of jute bags and t-shirts. Every woman who finds freedom through Freeset also brings freedom to her family. Many lives are saved through Freeset's humanitarian work. 

15 Fair Trade Coffee  

Almost everyone loves coffee. And the beauty of fair trade coffee is that it makes an enormous difference for thousands of coffee farmers in many countries. Many fair trade coffee brands are sold in local supermarkets. Here are some certified fair trade coffee companies:

16 Smile Squared 

It may be the most basic thing but a toothbrush makes a big difference in the life of a child who doesn't have one. And not just any toothbrush! Smile Squared toothbrushes are made from bamboo and feature advanced design, complete with antibacterial bristles using Nanosilver technology. For every toothbrush sold Smile Squared donates one to a child in need. The impact of oral hygiene on overall health of the child cannot be underestimated.  It's a great and affordable gift idea.

17 Global Girlfriend 

Global Girlfriend has amazing variety of gift ideas, all supporting women and girls through various projects and organizations. Operated by CharityUSA.com. Definitely worth a visit. 

18 Car Share Membership 

is a great gift (if available in your city). With Car2go, Zipcar, Autoshare and many others you can get a car for an hour or three, at a short notice, at many different locations throughout your city. It's a hugely green way to replace car ownership for city dwellers, thus benefitting not only the giftee, but our planet, as well.

Can you add to this list?  

What will you #givewithmeaning this giving season?  Please tell us in comments below and we'll spread the word.

Veronica Sinclaire
Veronica Sinclaire


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