Hey gang, the holidays are so right up in our grills. Since I’m not exactly in a super indulgent mood (except when it comes to nachos, of course) I sat down and thought about what I would really want to recommend this holiday season. Of course I adore food boxes, and awesome books, and a Cobalt Valkyrie-X Private Plane in Rose Gold, but I’d rather talk about these things/organizations that are so worth your gifting this season.
This Giving Tuesday (and beyond) consider donating in your giftee’s name, or sending some goodness with your awesome prezzie.
I’ve talked about GlobeIn baskets before because they’re filled with goodness, and I like goodness. They also spread the goodness, as each part of these handcrafted, artisan boxes are filled with gorgeous products made by farmers, artists, and tradespeople from all corners of the world. Whether you pick a hand woven basket with fair-trade jewelry, chocolate, oils, or yummy spices, you’re helping craftspeople in need from over 40 countries. Sign up for the club and get a new box every month for $10, or fill up a bigger basket with even more goodies based on a theme such as “pamper” or “savour” for $40/month, or as low as $35/month the more months you subscribe.
On this Giving Tuesday, the CDF’s Board of Directors has generously committed to match every dollar, up to $100,000, donated through this year’s Gift of Hope Campaign. Recently my daughter did a classroom project about non-profit organizations and she was shocked to learn (as was I) that the Celiac Disease Foundation was the least funded org out of anyone chose in her class. This bums me out more than never having another real donut again. So let’s give, and hope for a cure.
A dedicated bakery in Massachusetts, 88 acres creates gluten-free, nut-free, dairy-free, egg-free, fish- and shellfish-free, soy-free, sesame-free, GMO-free snacks that would make anyone happy all year ’round, including their non-nut butters that are the most creative I’ve seen on the market (pumpkin and vanilla spice sunflower, anyone?). For a special treat, 88 Acres offers holiday boxes whether you want to snack, make smoothies, or go full-comfort with the Danish inspired Hygge box that offers cozy comfort in the winter months. When I was talking with the 88 Acres people I learned that they prioritize giving back to the community by generously donating to a local women’s shelter, as well as offering up delicious food for the gluten-free food pantry in Boston. (Side note: I’ve always wondered if this could happen in real life. It does!!!) 88 Acres is also thoughtful in their hiring practices, and in working with farms that use sustainable practices. It’s the kind of company that you’ll want to support, while getting your allergy-free eat on.
Last year I began asking around as to how we could help Syrian families who were dying as they escaped the hell that was their home. It’s incredibly hard to just adopt a bunch of children from another country (which was totally where I was going with that) but UNICEF has plans and people in place to help the Syrian refugees, as well as many others that we don’t talk about as much. Since 90% of every dollar donated to UNICEF goes to help nourish, educate, and keep children safe, your donation counts for a tremendous amount. You can donate to help a child directly with an Impact gift, or buy a Kid Power Band for the tech loving kiddo on your list, where your kid goes on missions, unlocks food for kids in need, and tallies up points that do good.
I started volunteering with WriteGirl in Los Angeles this year, and I’ve turned into one of those people who says thing like, “No, the children are teaching ME.” But it’s true. This non-profit organization where professional writers are paired up with young girls as mentors in writing and in pursuing higher education, also reaches out to schools and youth detention centers. Being a volunteer for WriteGirl has made it crystal clear to me the importance of giving a voice to the historically voiceless. To teaching kids who are told to sit down and be quiet, that instead, they need to stand and be heard. The healing power of writing is so incredible, and I’m thrilled to sit with kids in the LA area every week and reinforce this idea, and let them know their words have power. Please give, so we can continue to empower the youth of America, and provide support in the pursuit of education.
Oy, with the fake news of the previous election season! If you want to make sure the links you share aren’t from a Russian hacker, or any other click bait site that isn’t actually the news, donate to ProPublica, a non-profit, independent, investigative journalism group who shine a light on corruption, highlight important news stories that get shuffled aside, and work to expose those in power who are preying on the weak. With resources becoming even more scarce at major publications to fund long-term investigations, ProPublica is quickly becoming one of the only options in the U.S. to provide non-biased, intensive, thorough, fact-checked, investigative journalism. Help them, help us.
*I did not keep these puppies even though I really wanted them, but they are at good homes now and I was so happy to foster temporarily. You can get puppies (or kitties, or whatever floats your boat) at your local no-kill animal shelter. Support those guys, too.