Thursday, December 13, 2007

Christmas and Africa

Christmas involves gift-giving, and it can be overwhelming trying to figure out what to buy for loved ones, co-workers, and those people who already have everything. I wanted to share a few unique gift ideas with you that are not only pretty cool but more importantly help Africa.

1). AHOPE Blend Cofee

A Washington-state coffee house makes this special blend of fair-trade coffee. $12.95/pound, and $1.50 goes to the charity AHOPE for Children, an Ethiopian orphanage caring for HIV-positive children. What a perfect gift for a coffee-lover, and a great way to raise awareness for this wonderful organization. (I'm currently sipping some right now and it's wonderful!)


This website offers a variety of items from Ethiopia and Ghana, as well as some related books. All proceeds go directly to Adoption Advocates International's humanitarian projects. (AAI works in Ethiopia, Ghana, Thailand and China.) Anything from this website would make a wonderful gift for an adoptive parent, adopted child, grandparent, or the internationally minded. Fast shipping, too. (For those of you with children from Layla House, check out the amazing new book "Faces of Layla." A must-have--we just purchased ours recently and it is BEAUTIFUL.)

3). Our Day to End Poverty: 24 Ways You Can Make a Difference

This book comes highly recommended and makes a neat gift for a socially-conscious family member or friend. $14.95 from every penny goes to humanitarian causes.

5). Amani Ya Juu

Means "higher peace" and is an amazing sewing reconcilation project and home for women in Africa! You can purchase fair-trade items that these talented ladies have made and know that your money is going towards helping marginalized women in Africa work towards peace. (They hail from Rwanda, Ethiopia, Burundi, Congo, Uganda, Sudan, Kenya, and Somalia). I love the passport purses and the kitchen items! Their children's toys are adorable too!

6). Donations

Why not consider tacking a donation on in addition to a gift you're giving, or in lieu of one for that person who literally has everything and has a passion for humanitarian causes? Check out these cool gifts you can give in someone's name!
International Justice Mission--works to free people around the world from violent forms of injustice. Has been featured on both Oprah and Dateline. See their 2007 Gift Catalogue and give gifts like Advocacy or Aftercare.
AHOPE for Children--facility in Ethiopia that cares for HIV-positive orphans and assists families in caring for their HIV-positive children at home. With a minimum donation of $25, a card will be sent to the recipient saying a donation was made in their name. Besides a one-time donation you can give the gift of sponsorship of a child (for one year, $360), or choose to provide a school uniform and school supplies, holiday gifts, a new chalkboard for the classroom, etc.
Heifer International--their motto is "Ending hunger, Caring for the earth." Through this wonderful charity you can give the gift of an animal to a family in the world that will help provide sustenance for them. You can give heifers, ducks, water buffalo...the list goes on.
World Vision--you can provide anything from the share of an alpaca ($15) to education for a child.
(Some of these charities are faith-based, and some are not. Please don't let that deter you from giving either way--they are each doing amazing work and helping those who need it the most!)


Lara said...

Ooo! Thanks for the great ideas!

Kristen Borland said...

okay, i have to check all this out! thanks for the links!!

The MSILF said...

Thanks. I am always looking for these kinds of things.

Joy said...

what great ideas. thanks for sharing. how are you today?

Rachel said...

What a great post, another one is (saving orphans and widows) much like your number 5. I friend of mine helps market these dolls here in the US.

Brianna Heldt said...

joy, i'm pretty good, anxious for kaitlyn's doctor appointments, sleepy from staying up so late to give her her meds. also excited because today is kev's last day of work until january 7th! woohoo! :) i hope the newmans are doing well. your tree looks so pretty. (as in the picture on your blog...i haven't been stalking you or anything! :) )

sarah said...

Thanks for posting this! My mom loves receiving donations instead of gifts because she is trying to downsize on all the stuff she already has, and besides that, she loves knowing she has somehow helped someone else. Why give someone a useless gift just "because," when instead you could better the world?

Heifer International is great. My mom recently had some bees donated in her name...sounds kinda silly, but not for the people who will reap the benefit!

Another option for animal lovers, would be to donate to their local humane society or animal shelter. Everyone has a soft spot for a certain cause. Whatever it is, it's something we can all feel good about doing.

Happy holidays to you!


Jeannett Gibson said...

LOVE love love the kid toys! I want to buy them all!


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