Happy December to all of you! It really is beginning to look a lot like Christmas. I live very close to my city’s little main street area, and across the street from my apartment is a lot that stays empty most of the year. When December comes around, not only does the main street get decorated, but the empty lot gets filled with Christmas trees! One of my favorite things to do in December is to walk up and down that main street, with all its lights, and walk by the Christmas tree lot and smell the evergreen. Seeing my little town transform for Christmas is one of my favorite things about this season.
One of my other favorite things about the Christmas season is finding the right gifts. You know, the ones that suit your loved ones just right. But it is even more special when I know that the gift I bought them not only makes them happy, but supports a good cause as well. As you all know, The Junia Project is dedicated to the empowerment and encouragement of women around the world. So this year, we are highlighting 6 of our favorite ways to help women – while also helping you check those gifts off your Christmas list! The organizations below make amazingly beautiful products, and purchasing these products helps to support women around the world.
So, for those of you who didn’t get all your Christmas shopping done this weekend, we hope you enjoy The Junia Project’s Guide to Christmas Shopping!
6 ways to help women this Christmas season:
1. Buy a pair of “Punjammies” from The International Princess Project and help women in India
“International Princess Project’s mission is to create pathways to freedom for women escaping the ravages of sex slavery to achieve lives of hope and dignity. We do this by partnering with indigenous organizations to establish micro-enterprise sewing centers that offer these women a fresh start and place to heal. When a woman becomes part of an IPP sewing center, she learns a new trade [sewing] and practices refining her craftsmanship by producing quality sleep & loungewear called PUNJAMMIES.”
Check out these adorable pajamas at the Punjammies Online Shop!
2. Buy a bag from Bagay Ki Bon and help women in Haiti
“Bagay Ki Bon” means “Good Things” and that’s what happens when we work with people in Haiti to help create economic opportunities and break the cycle of poverty in their community. Our goal is to give relief to women and men in poverty, but more importantly, to give these women and men a means of making their own way in life. By purchasing our bags, your investment goes to give people a tool that will not only help them mend their own lives, but also give them a way to take an active role in the rebuilding of their community. (An added bonus with this one – I know one of the people who helps with this mission, and talk about a servant’s heart. This is a great group!)
Check out these good things at the Bagay Ki Bon Online Shop!
3. Purchase accessories and jewelry from FashionABLE and help women in Africa
FashionABLE is committed to long-term solutions to fighting poverty, and our main focus is creating opportunities for vulnerable women. That means that your purchase creates jobs, so that the women are not dependent upon charity, but instead are a vital part of a developing economy. Our strategy is two-fold: work with women to help them start small business cooperatives, and partner with and require manufacturers to also employ women with fair wages & fair hiring practices.
Check out their products at the FashionABLE Online Shop!
4. Purchase something from the Girl Rising Store and support the education of girls around the world
Girl Rising is a global campaign for girls’ education. We use the power of storytelling to share the simple truth that educating girls can transform societies. Girl Rising unites girls, women, boys and men who believe every girl has the right to go to school and the right to reach her full potential. Our mission is to change the way the world values the girl. Everything we do is to ensure that girls’ education is part of the mainstream conversation. We do this through film and other tools, such as educational and advocacy videos, screening guides and a free standards-aligned school curriculum. Check out the Girl Rising Shop!
5. Shop at the Global Goods Partners Shop and help women around the world
As professionals in the international development field, Catherine Lieber Shimony and Joan Shifrin traveled to impoverished areas around the globe to support community-based economic initiatives. Time and time again, they met dynamic women that were producing beautiful, handmade goods, yet lacked access to sustainable markets in which to sell their products. In 2005, Catherine and Joan were inspired to found Global Goods Partners to create effective income-generation opportunities for women and their communities through access to the consumer market for handmade, fair trade products. Check out the GGP Online Shop!
6. Shop With a Mission and help artisans around the world
Our mission is to equip and assist people in developing countries to break the cycle of poverty through their handiwork and creativity. We focus on handicraft projects that allow the development of a micro enterprise, leading them down the path to self-sufficiency. These projects are very small enterprises, ranging from one refugee family to a group of village women, all in need of a consistent income. Every product represents a changed life! (A few of us here at The Junia Project are personally connected with this organization as well!)
Check out this Fair Trade Marketplace!
Thanks for checking out The Junia Project’s Guide to Christmas Shopping! If you purchase any products from these shops, please let us know!