How to Shop with a Conscience this Christmas

It is estimated that Americans will spend nearly $500 billion dollars on gifts this Christmas. That’s billion with a “B.” Can you imagine? The average family in America will spend just over $700 on gifts, while over 80% of the world’s population lives on less than $10 per day.

What if we could choose to spend our money on gifts that help to break down global income disparities and the cycle of poverty in marginalized communities? Oh wait, that’s right, we can.

I love knowing that my purchasing power is being used for the empowerment and betterment of the makers and communities who created it.   Here are some of my favorite brands with a conscience…

Noonday Collection: Jewelry and Accessories

“Noonday Collection’s mission is to create economic opportunity for the vulnerable. We partner with artisans in the developing world, empowering them to grow sustainable businesses. By creating a marketplace for their goods, we create dignified jobs at living wages….”

Krochet Kids: Knit Wear and Clothing for Kids and Adults

“Krochet Kids intl. has continued to grow and evolve in ways we never imagined since we earned our non-profit status in January 2008.  Today, over 150 people in Uganda and Peru are working, receiving education, and being mentored toward a brighter future in creating gifts that give back…”

To The Market: Jewelry, Clothing, Home Goods, Accessories…

I am loving that bedspread made out of recycled sari material!

“TO THE MARKET | Survivor-made Goods (TTM) combines the powers of commerce and storytelling to empower the world’s most courageous survivor populations, in the belief that resilience is more powerful than suffering…”

31 BitsUgandan Paper Bead Jewelry

“Every purchase you make can either have a positive or negative impact on the world. 31 Bits is part of a movement revolutionizing the way people do business. We value both the creator and the consumer. The artisans in our program are receiving a sustainable income and holistic education, empowering them to rise above poverty…”

Raven and LilyWomen’s Jewelry and Clothing

“Raven + Lily currently helps employ marginalized women in India, Ethiopia, Kenya, Cambodia, Pakistan, and the USA at fair trade wages to give them access to a safe job, sustainable income, health care, education, and a real chance to to break the cycle of poverty for themselves and their families. Raven + Lily is committed to providing products that are made by hand, follow fair trade standards, and honor our eco-friendly commitment…”

Other ideas with a conscience:

Toms

Ten Thousand Villages

Sseko Designs

Esperos Bag

Who did I forget? What other giving brands do you love?

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