Director of Marketing and Community
The Hoop Fund
Because we value our relationships, we want our gifts to be a heartfelt expression. For most people, this is not an easy task.
We resort to best bets – gift cards, trendy stocking stuffers, and Hallmark. But it’s actually easier than ever to find gifts with meaning.
Conscious consumers might shop based on ownership type (family-owned), production location (Made in the USA), environmental standards (organic), and labor practices (Fair Trade Certified).
And green gift guides abound! From Green America and Fair Trade USA to the blogosphere. Everyone seems to be getting into the action.
The “One for One” movement is a newly popular option that combines consumption and philanthropy. Brand leaders include Toms Shoes, FEED, and Better World Books.
With each purchase of shoes, Toms sends a pair of shoes to a child in need. With each purchase of FEED branded bags, the company funds nutritious school meals for malnourished children. For every book purchased on BetterWorldBooks.com, they send a book to someone in need.
The Hoop Fund offers a unique take on this model, combining a philanthropic microloan to the maker with every purchase. For example, if you buy a sweater on the Hoop, part of your purchase will go to the weaver for a specific project need. The money is returned to the lender upon repayment.
More and more gift-givers are also opting to send donations instead of stuff and charities of all kinds make it easier to send a donation as a gift. Universal Giving is a great resource for donation opportunities around the world and 100% of each donation goes directly to the cause.
What’s meaningful to you and your loved ones?
Mary is a sustainability professional specializing in community building, marketing, and business development. She served as a director for Global Exchange, the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE), and the Investors’ Circle. Mary holds an MBA in Sustainable Business from the Bainbridge Graduate Institute.