Holiday Gift Guide: Gifts That Give Back

Last Update: March 3, 2023

If you’re looking for a thoughtful and unique gift, this guide is a great place to start. All of these gifts are practically guaranteed to make your loved ones feel good while reflecting the true spirit of the holiday season—because nothing beats the feeling of helping others.

1. A Fresh Idea

Climate change is a crisis that affects everyone, so gifting carbon offsets is an opportunity to do good on a global scale. Terrapass and Chooose have a few different subscription options to help reduce the amount of CO₂ in the atmosphere throughout the year.

2. Planet-Friendly Packaging

Did you know it takes a plastic water bottle 450 years to biodegrade? Cheap plastic packaging is a big timesaver for those on-the-go, but when you consider the environmental cost, it hardly seems worth it—especially because there are so many sustainable options available. We suggest filling a basket with a few essentials that’ll go a long way in reducing single-use packaging waste. Start with a few favorites, like a to-go coffee cup, lunchbox kit, leak-proof storage trio, reusable snack bags set, and some cute waxed wraps. You’ll help your friends clean up their act and show the planet some love, too.

3. The Gift of Hope

These charming fair trade ornaments are handmade by artisans who rely on the income to support their families as part of Ornaments 4 Orphans’ orphan prevention program. 100 percent of the social enterprise’s proceeds support orphans and children living in impoverished communities, mostly in East Africa.

4. Do-Good Market

UNICEF Market’s gift finder site makes it easy to find unique, handmade gifts for everyone on your list. Search everything from artisanal jewelry to clothing to home decor sorted by price, recipient, occasion, or region. No matter what you choose, every item on the site helps UNICEF “save and protect the world’s most vulnerable children.” The organization also offers handmade holiday cards and a “Shop by Cause” option so you can personalize your gift to support the issues your loved one cares about most.

5. A Year of Health & Wellness

Give the gift of Thrive Market! It’s a thoughtful way to show how much you care about the health and well-being of your besties. They’ll get access to more than 6,000 wholesome food, home, and beauty products, plus their memberships will benefit others, and the planet, too.

This article is related to:

Eco-Friendly, Living, Tips

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Melinda Gross

Melinda writes about health, wellness, and food for the Thrive Market blog. She started her career as a financial journalist in NYC and has written for Where Magazine, Worth, Forbes, and When she's not reading or writing, she enjoys working out, sketching, and playing with her daughter and mini-dachshund, Goliath.

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