I have been really impressed with the outburst of companies and organizations with BIG HEARTS to help the world. I am really excited about this blog post because I have put together a Christmas Gift giving Guide with companies that not only offer amazing products, but also give back to a charity or great cause too. SO maybe when we are choosing gifts for our loved ones this year… we can consciously choose gifts that also help the world.

I know there are sooo many companies that do this right now….companies that I have never heard of. If you know any more cool ones…Can you add/link more in the comment section? This post could be an amazing resource to help change the world one christmas present at a time.

1// 31 BITS
Each piece of the 31 bits jewelry is handmade by one of 63 women in Uganda, using 100% recycled paper and other local materials. 31 Bits is committed to working with each woman until she has graduated from their program and attained a sustainable means of income within her own community. Check out the partnership with Reef.

Donna Karan’s Pure DKNY fragrance is part of a collaborative project with CARE proceeds from this particular fragrance goes to help over 1,000 women in Uganda break the cycle of poverty by helping them with education and jobs.

Falling Whistles gives a small window into our world’s largest war. Originally just a journal written about boys sent to the frontlines of war armed with only a whistle, readers forwarded it with the same kind of urgency in which it was written and demanded to know –”What can we do?” The Falling Whistles campaign launched with a simple response – Make their weapon your voice and be a whistleblower for peace in Congo. Read the story and buy the whistle. Proceeds go to rehabilitate and advocate for war-affected children. Share their story and speak up for them.

With every pair of shoes you purchase, TOMS Shoes will give a pair of new shoes to a child in need. One for One. They are using the purchasing power of individuals to benefit the greater good. SOO COOL!

A simple over the shoulder bag for the city made with 100% reclaimed materials. This plywood good is made with reclaimed and recycled billboard materials by Guatemalan urban artists. A percentage of profits will enable the creation of new homes for Mayan widows.

For every purchase of a Project 7product (coffee, gum, mints or water), some good is done in seven areas of need – Feed the Hungry, Heal the Sick, Hope for Peace, House the Homeless, Quench the Thirsty, Teach them Well and Save the Earth. They aren’t asking you to buy more stuff, just change the products that you already buy.


WE all have gift cards that are unused in our wallets, so why not donate them to Gift Card Giver to help someone in need this Christmas? I love this company, not only because it helps people, but also because these people were thinking creatively and outside of the box.

More than 20% of the proceeds from the candle and scents collection, Altru collection support thePerfect World children’s Foundation.

This Recycled Collection has cute 3-pocket pouches that are made from recycled rice and feed bags. STOPstart employs women who have been rescued out of trafficking and severe abuse and provides good-paying jobs with an opportunity for a bright future.

The story of charity: water – The 2009 September Campaign Trailer from charity: water on Vimeo.

at Mycharitywater you can run, bike, hike, give up birthdays or christmas presents to help raise money to fund water projects for communities in need. 100% of the money you raise will go directly to people in need and in 12-18 months, you’ll see the proof of the projects built using photos and GPS.

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  1. kate

    With over 440 Billion dollars expected to be spent this year at Christmas, it would be really incredible for more of us to make more purchases with purpose that can do good in the world!

    letthemlol was started by a small community of people who saw that many people in the world experience unnecessary suffering and they wanted to do something about it. In one year this community raised funds for 10 clean water wells in Sierra Leone, Africa. Every ringtone provides one person clean water and each clothing item provides an entire family clean water. We track the well drilling process and update people on the wells they made happen.

  2. Keri

    Great idea list! Another awesome company is Woman at Risk, (abbr. W.A.R.) http://warinternational.org/

    “Women At Risk, International unites and educates women to create circles of protection and hope around women at risk through culturally sensitive, value-added intervention projects.”

    I have been to several W.A.R parties, they offer jewelry, handmade scarfs, bags, and clothing. Each piece is made by a lady rescued from trafficking and now working in a safehouse. Alot of the jewelry comes with a card telling the name of the maker, how old she was, and from what country. All of the money goes back to the safehouses to help support the women. I have several beautiful pieces of jewelry and a scarf. I love wearing them because its such an great conversation starter and its beautiful! It feels good to know that you have helped someone. :)

  3. Heather Sanchez

    That’s JaymeDee on the ad for 31 bits! The girl on the top right.
    Have you ever heard her music? The girl is going to be HUGE one day, I know it!
    So awesome to see her reppin such an awesome line!
    Check her on youtube! jaymedee333

  4. Emily

    Thank you SOO much for putting this together, Promise. I’ve ben trying to find some ideas like these for Christmas gifts and this gives me a few more options. Love it!
    Here is another organization called Open Arms that helps refugees in the U.S. – http://www.theopenarmsshop.com/

  5. Avatar of Promise Tangeman Promise Tangeman

    Heather!! Yes i have heard of her. She is GREAT and sooo beautiful too.

  6. aimee

    Love these ideas Promise!! The 31 Bits necklaces are REALLY cute!!!

  7. Ashlee

    Love it! Check out MiiR Bottles! http://www.miir.com/ One dollar of each MiiR bottle you purchase provides one person with clean water for one year (donated to Charity Water). Plus you get a free skin with each bottle you purchase and can customize them. I bought some for stocking stuffers! :)

  8. Lydia

    I heard about 31 Bits not too long ago because one of the girls on the team is from my area. They’re an amazing group of young women making a difference!

    Another gift idea is a Starbucks red gift card. Each time it’s used, a contribution is made towards helping those living with HIV and AIDS in Africa.

  9. Sarah

    Love this! A couple of years ago our family stopped giving Christmas gifts and take the money we would have spent on gifts and give it to “the least of these” This year we are giving to One Small Step, an organization the support the unadoptable kids in Congo. http://www.onesmallstepfund.org/

  10. Mindy A


    Locally owned and operated, fitness inspired wear with $1 of each sale benefitting cancer research! Fantastic story!

    Great idea Promise!

  11. Brooke

    It’s so wonderful to see blogs like this! There are so many benevolent companies, entrepreneurs, artisans and organizations and merchandise out there! It’s so hard to find them all!

    We at Jahub recently posted a list of nearly 50 websites where you can make your 2010 Christmas purchases count! Just copy and paste
    http://jahub.tumblr.com/tagged/Jahub into your address bar and be enlightened!

    “Purchase with Purpose”



  12. Krysta

    I just bought a KrochetKids hat. They’re amazing… A group of women in Africa make them and sign their names in each of the hats they make. You can then go on their website and leave a thank-you message to the woman who made the hat you purchased. I love the concept and their hats are amazing. In fact, I think Nordstroms decided to carry them!

  13. Amy Ryland

    Love it! Had the Project 7 coffee at the catalyst conference and not only is it an awesome company but there coffee is really good too! Thanks for more ideas!

  14. Amanda

    Loved this post! It’s amazing to be a part of a generation that really seeks to make a change in this world. THe 31Bits girls are amazing, I love them.

    Another amazing organization are my friends the Krochet Kids http://www.krochetkids.org I met these guys when we were freshmen in college and to see where they are today just blows my mind! So proud of them I could just cry.

  15. Stephanie

    I LOVE YOUR POST TODAY!!! Thanks for some great ideas.

  16. Annie

    I love Toms and those whistle necklaces :) This is a great idea! I am de-stashing my jewellery-making drawer on my blog, and using the money to help me send a package to the girls in Honduras at the She Dances house that you advertised a little while ago.

  17. Alicia

    here are two more!



  18. Melissa

    what a great gift guide! my 8-year-old daughter just made and sold 10 bracelets to benefit charity water. she was so excited to give and it was her charity of choice. this year we are choosing to actually give jesus something for HIS birthday. my 6 and 8 year olds want to give the money they normally get toward presents and give it away. we have a few ideas, but are staring with the King’s Christmas List highlighting ways to give all over the world…

  19. Alicia

    oh! i forgot to add

  20. jenniifer

    these are all great ideas.

    I have been on a quest though … to find organizations that are donating, working to help poverty and woman … here … in the united states. most organizations i find are really working to help children, woman and communities in developing countries .. but it has been heavy on my heart this year — that there are so many people within our OWN country that really need our help. so many of our own go homeless, hungry and uneducated.

    if anyone knows of any, please post!! i am on the hunt too — who knows i just may have to start my own. :)

  21. Leigh

    THANK YOU! I just posted something like this on my blog! I want to make all of my gifts either handmade or benefitting others this year. I am obsessed with those necklaces too — beautiful! & I have many TOMS orders on their way.

  22. Leigh

    Also — I purchases some Got Your Back T-Shirts for gifts too. They give a school uniform to students in need. The website is http://www.gybmovement.org/

  23. Christine

    There is also a website that sells scarfs made by women in Ethiopia and Uganda to help them get out of poverty and be able to support themselves and their children.

  24. Shelby

    I love this! I know of two that are local to my town which, are: Covenant Coffee, which helps emancipated and foster youth and Thorn Clothing which helps provide water! Both very awesome!

  25. Erin

    Check out Wonderfully Made & their cute t-shirts handmade jewelry – profits help support their organization which helps young women know their true value.

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  27. Chris

    This is awesome!!

    There is a great organization called Retouch that sells photography and uses all of the proceeds to help those in need all over the world. They supply food, care, school fees and Bibles! And the pictures are very reasonably priced.


  28. chelsea

    I love this list! I just smelled pure in a magazine but didn’t realize that it benefited a charity!

  29. Jillian Pfund

    i LOVE this gift list! What a great idea…

    Some other gifts that give back:
    - Adopt your special someone’s favorite animal at worldwildlife.org. My mom adopted an amur leopard for me & it was so meaningful!
    - Choose a gift from worldvision.org’s gift catalog and buy a child a bike, job training, stock a school… the list goes on! You can really make a difference for a small cost.

    I’m going to write a blog post about this (mirror-forthe-sun.tumblr.com) and refer people to your gift list, as well, Promise. I hope that’s okay.
    Live in love! xx.

  30. Rachel

    Thanks for this post! It always encouraging to see people who think of others :) My friend has an adorable antique store at etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/shoplovies and 10% of the proceeds go to a homeless shelter in Chicago-really cool :)

  31. Yana

    I love this… making Christmas about giving selflessly instead of receiving. That is the true meaning of it!

  32. Rachel

    I love this idea of still getting something, but giving as well!!

    Two other organizations are:
    Call It Captivate at http://callitcaptivate.com/cic/ where when you buy a shirt 20% of the proceeds go to the charity of your choice.
    Hello Somebody at http://www.hello-somebody.com/index.php which is where when you buy something from them, the money goes to multiple different things such as water drilling. They are trying to feed one million people by the end of the year, and are currently at around 800,000.

  33. Rachel

    Yes! And… equips children and young people with the tools to be better learners, to believe in themselves and to realize their dreams through the work of creating collaboratively with peers and professional artists. This company is operated by some friends of mine and directly benefits children and young people in urban Philadelphia.


  34. Kirsten

    I’m getting my mom some of those 31 Bits jewlery for Christmas!

  35. Lauranne Boyd

    http://www.onemangotree.com – Fair trade + Organic apparel, handbags, and accessories made by one of 30 women in war-effected northern Uganda.

  36. Tom

    Don’t forget about your friends at Jedidiah…

  37. kindsey

    my friend and her husband started this company that sells organic fair trade gourmet coffee!
    50% goes to 8 different causes that do amazing things in the world.

    aaand i opened this etsy shop to support an organization called exodus cry that is helping end human trafficking. creative outlets that give back. i’m a huge fan!

    thanks for sharing all the wonderful others!


  38. jackie

    have you ever heard of warby parker? they are a glasses company that is similar to Tom’ shoes. for every pair of glasses you purchase, they give a pair to someone in need. and they’re under $100! and customer service is amazing :)

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  40. Yesenia

    Krochet Kids…I just bought some hats this weekend!! I love them!!


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