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For an extra-special gift this holiday season, why not pick up one of the best gifts that give back? Charitable acts are a big part of many people’s holiday traditions, especially come Giving Tuesday, so gifting something that benefits more than just the recipient is an easy way to spread the love. But before we get to the gifts, let’s go over some of the best ways you can get involved.
How to Give Back to Your Community
If giving back is at the forefront of your mind as we approach the holidays, there’s a lot you can do to get involved. After all, it is called the season of giving for a reason. Here are four tips on how to get involved and give back this holiday season.
Volunteer in your community. The best way to donate during the holiday season is not with your wallet, but with your time. Head to your local shelter or place of worship and volunteer during the busy holiday season. Not sure where to go in your community? Thanks to resources like VolunteerMatch.org, finding a place to volunteer is easier than ever.
Donate winter wear. Winter typically brings the harshest weather of the year, with blizzard-like conditions sweeping most of the country for months at a time. Help those less fortunate by donating lightly used winter clothing. Many of us end up pulling out winter clothing from storage, so reevaluating your wardrobe and donating a few pieces that you haven’t worn in a couple years is a win-win.
Make a change — literally. We all have loose change lying around the house that could be better served elsewhere. An easy way to be helpful around the holidays? Round up all the loose change you can spare, head to the bank or your local coin machine, and donate that loose change to a good cause or organization.
Start at home with random acts of kindness. When thinking of giving back, many people tend to think of strangers, forgetting that charity truly starts in the home. Have a new mom on your Christmas list this year? Offer up some valuable babysitting time. Know someone who could use some help getting around? Offer them a ride every now and then. They’re the most important people in your life, and these little acts of kindness can be some of the best gifts you give.
Best Gifts That Give Back
Ready for some gifts? In the spirit of the season of giving, we rounded up a selection of gifts for the entire family that’ll be more than just another present to unwrap. Keep scrolling for 11 of the best gifts that give back, reminding you and the ones you love about the true meaning of the holiday season.
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Best Shoes That Give Back
1. Best Gift That Gives Back
By now, you've likely heard of TOMS Shoes and their "one to one" campaign, where each purchase made from their site also donates a pair of shoes to those in need across the United States and the world. However, gone are the days where those classic alpargatas were the only shoes available — and the only option to give back with TOMS. With partnerships in over 70 countries, each TOMS purchase now works to provide access not only to shoes, but to sight services, clean water, safe births, and anti-bullying campaigns. And with tons of new shoe styles, like these chic Black Suede and Floral Metallic Jaquard Mix Women's Esme Boots, there's nothing not to love about TOMS.
Where to buy: $129.95, TOMS Shoes
Best Bag That Gives Back
2. Best Gift That Gives Back to the Hungry
While they're best known for their iconic FEED burlap tote bags ($98, FEED), if you're looking for a bag with a bit more versatility that still gives back, this Canvas Field Messenger Bag hits all the marks. Providing 50 school meals to children in need, this brick-colored canvas crossbody is structured for a look that never fades. Plus, it has room for everything from your handbag essentials to that book club book you can't put down.
Where to buy: $138, FEED
Best Necklace That Gives Back Rainn
3. Best Gift That Gives Back to Survivors
For a gift that you or someone you love can truly keep close to your heart, pick up this Hope Shines necklace. Made from a layered mix of gold, silver, and moonstone, with each necklace purchase, Uncommon Goods donates $5 to RAINN, the nation's largest anti-sexual violence organization. Formed to carry out programs that help prevent sexual violence, support victims, and ensure that perpetrators are brought to justice, this gift is a beautiful way to shine some light in the dark.
Where to buy: $85, Uncommon Goods
Best Socks That Give Back Homeless
4. Best Gift That Gives Back to the Homeless
Did you know one of the most requested items in homeless shelters is socks? This holiday season, keep your loved ones and loved ones across the nation warm with a set of Bombas socks. With over nine million socks donated so far, Bombas donates a pair of their high-quality, durable socks to a person in need with each purchase, making this a gift that'll have you feeling all fuzzy inside.
Where to buy: $57, Bombas Socks
Best Sweater That Gives Back
5. Best Gift That Gives Back to Women in Need
At Of A Kind, each item is unique. Every collection is limited edition and, you guessed it, one of a kind. One of their best sellers is this lovely "Professional Enthusiast" sweater. Perfect for the optimist in your life, this 100-percent cashmere sweater is buttery soft with a dreamy fit and hand stitched script front. Best of all, with each purchase, Of A Kind donates a portion of the proceeds to Her Justice, empowering women living in poverty — many of whom are survivors of intimate partner violence — by recruiting and mentoring volunteer lawyers to provide them with free legal help. The price may be a bit steep, but the sweater made of pure cashmere and gives you the satisfaction of helping your fellow women.
Where to buy: $360, Of a Kind
Best Notebook That Gives Back Teachers
6. Best Gift That Gives Back to Teachers
Stephen Colbert is one of the most well-known satirical minds around, and cultural spoofs are one of his fortes. After his spoof of Gwyneth Paltrow's lifestyle website Goop went viral, the two teamed up to turn his spoof brand, Covetton House, into reality with a collection of funny "luxury" products. The best part? All the proceeds go to DonorsChoose.org, a non-profit formed to help teachers across the US stock their classrooms with all the supplies they need. Our favorite piece of the collection? The "Softbound Reincarnated Forest," a leather-bound journal emblazoned with the phrase, "My Incoherent Ramblings," perfect for everything from personal journaling, to, well, your incoherent ramblings.
Where to buy: $88, Goop
Best Water Bottle That Gives Back
7. Best Gift That Gives Back to the Environment
They're the most popular water bottles around, and it's with good reason. Designed to help rid the world of plastic bottles, S'well water bottles are eco-friendly, condensation free, and insulated to keep beverages cold for up to 24 hours and hot for up to 12. Another big part of the brand is charity. S'well partners with various non-profits to raise awareness and money for causes close to their hearts. In fact, with every purchase of this Geode Rose bottle, S'well will donate 20 percent of the retail price to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, making this a must-have gift for every woman in your life.
Where to buy: $35, Swell
Best Fitness Tracker That Gives Back
8. Best Gift That Gives Back to Kids
Teach your kids the importance of giving back with this fitness tracker from UNICEF. The UNICEF Kid Power Band is a one-size-fits-most fitness band that tracks both steps and movement. As your child becomes more active, their activity unlocks therapeutic food packets that UNICEF delivers to severely malnourished children across the world, encouraging kids to keep moving and teaching them the importance of helping others. Waterproof and kid-approved, help keep your child and children all over the world healthy with the Kid Power Band.
Where to buy: $39.99, Amazon
Best Skincare That Gives Back
9. Best Gift That Gives Back to Girls' Education
They're one of the most beloved beauty brands on the market today, but did you know with each purchase, Tatcha Beauty donates a portion of their proceeds to Room to Read? Designed to provide girls across the world with access to education and educational materials, Room to Read is working hard to ensure every girl gets a chance to learn and create the future of her dreams. A great excuse to splurge on this best-selling concentrated moisturizer, treat yourself and millions of girls around the world today.
Where to buy: $110, Sephora
10. Best Gift That Give Back to Breast Cancer Survivors
Have a candle lover in your life? Looking for the perfect hostess gift? Then this holiday, pick up the "Hope" candle from Tobi Tobin. This luxurious floral candle features a blend of fresh French cassis, rose petals, osmanthus blossom, water lily, jasmine, tiger baby melon, grape vine, vanilla, and Mediterranean lavender for a scent that will transport you to the middle of the richest floral garden no matter the time of year. Best of all, with each candle purchased, Tobi Tobin will donate 100% of the proceeds to Susan G. Komen Foundation and their fight against Breast Cancer.
Where to buy: $78, Bloomingdales
Best Food Subscription Box That Gives Back
11. Best Gift That Helps Families in Need
Looking for a way to eat healthier and help others do the same? Then sign up to Love With Food by SnackNation. Each month, Love With Food delivers a curated box, filled with healthy snack options hand-picked to satisfy both your cravings and your body. But that's not the best part — with each box sold, Love With Food donates at least one meal to an American family in need through its partnership with Feeding America. With over one million meals donated so far, share some love and fight hunger with Love With Food.
Where to buy: $7.99 to $24.99, Love With Food
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