I’ve been writing a series of posts on clutter-free gift giving and hope to inspire all of you to put some thought and creativity into your gifts. Challenge yourself to consider if your giving really reflects the recipient and whether or not the gift will really enhance their lives, or just add to the clutter.
For this post I’d like you to consider gifts that can actually “give back” either by supporting the community or the environment.
Jewelry with a purpose. If you have girlfriends on your shopping list, consider Project Have Hope. The women of Acholi make beautiful, colorful jewelry and revenue from the sales is used to fund educational and economic programs. Along the same lines with a higher price tag, there is Build a Nest.
Shop local. I’m fortunate enough to live in a community that has a strong local shopping district. Wellesley, MA offers many local merchants mixed with larger more well known stores. The Gifted Hand highlights local artisans or independent toy stores like Magic Beans give me the chance to support my community as well as small business owners.
Oxfam America. What could be more creative than buying a sheep for one of your friends? Your donation allows impoverished women to create their own income.
Gift your talents. Be kind to the environment and give of yourself no packaging, or waste involved! Can you donate your time or talent to friends? Possibly you are good with finances and you can donate your time to help a friend that needs guidance. Can you cook a meal? Clean a home? Wash a car? Help with lawn maintenance? Give your friend or family member a coupon for your services and your creativity will certainly be appreciated.