Written by Isabella Davey
From wine that just keeps on giving (for both the desperate adults, and animals in Australia), to a warm and cosy bed for an abandoned kitten, this year (not just at Christmas time) we should be spreading the gift of joy, compassion and freedom from suffering. Many organisations and charities such as Animal Australia, Taronga Zoo and WIRES, have gift options that enable others to benefit from the generosity of individuals, as well as some giving both ways. With these gifts and cards, you are giving in most cases a physical gift, and a mindful gift.
Animal Welfare League NSW – Animal Guardian gifts
Animal Guardian gifts are easy to order online at www.awlnsw.com.au, and include a card for the person who will receive your gift of choice outlining what their gift entails, as well as the physical help to an animal in need. And as an added bonus, every Animal Guardian gift is tax-deductible. The gifts are outlined here:
$25 can give an abandoned kitten a warm, cosy bed
$50 can give a young puppy food to grow big and strong
$75 helps AWL NSW vets treat injured and suffering animals
$100 helps AWL NSW inspectors rescue an animal from cruelty and neglect
$200 helps break the cycle and de-sex a litter of orphaned kittens
Charity Hampers – WIRES; WSPA; Civic Disability Services
With hampers for Mother’s and Father’s Days, Christmas, Valentines, Birthdays and so so many food options, websites like www.charityhampers.com.au, www.thecharityhamper.com.au, and www.firstclasshampers.com.au have a large variety of quality stocked hampers which give back to the community.
At Charity Hampers.com.au, 10% of the purchase price (excluding postage) will be donated to your selected charity. The recipient of the hamper will be advised via a foil label that your chosen charity has been supported through the purchase.
The Charity Hamper sources and purchases socially responsible goods from organisations that employ people with disability in the supply chain. Individual products are assembled in gift hampers by employees with disabilities at Civic Industries, then they are sent to their recipients.
First Class Hampers has a function at the checkout which allows those shopping to donate $1-2 to one of the following charities: WSPA, Breast Cancer Network Australia, Starlight Foundation. They match the donation dollar for dollar, as well as donating this same amount each month.
Animals Australia – Compassionate Gifts; Cruelty-Free Feasts
At www.animalsaustralia.org, they give assistance to gift givers in regards to buying ones that are cruelty-free. A link to www.choosecrueltyfree.org.au/cruelty-free-list/ outlines brands which sell all or some vegan products, as well as those that are Certified Palm Oil Free (CPOF), and vegetarian products (i.e. contain beeswax, milk etc.). Brands on the list include: cosmetic brand Australis; handmade cosmetic brand LUSH; and sunscreen UV Natural.
Charity Greeting Cards – Alzheimer’s WA; Mission Australia; Oxfam
Plenty of charities offer the ability to buy greeting cards for special events such as Birthdays and Christmas, with part of the cost being donated to their cause. At www.charitygreetingcards.com.au, www.charitycardmarket.com.au, and https://acrf.com.au, you can purchase said cards, with a variety of charities to choose from. And to save paper, you could even think of sending an e-card instead.
Recycled Clothing – second-hand, and from used plastic
Recently, there have been more and more stores pop up around the Sydney area, particularly in the city, retailing articles of clothing made from recycled materials such as plastic bottles and fishing nets. Not only are you helping the environment by reusing objects that would have been discarded into landfill (from old clothes to containers), you are also assisting the local market through the purchase of Australian hand-made objects. Stores such as Recycled Rags Emporium in Neutral Bay, The Rocks Push (which can be found in David Jones, Unplugged, Splish Splash and more), and www.upcyclestudio.com.au stock such gifts. This is perfect for someone who likes to own items that are unique and express their individuality, rather than following the current fashion trends.
The Keep Cup
From coffee lovers to smoothie lovers, the Keep Cup is a company created with the vision of encouraging the use of reusable cups. In 65 countries around the world, the company is able to reduce landfill (in the form of plastic/paper drink containers) one cup at a time. These are available on their website, in stores around the country, as well as the Loreto Keep Cup available from the Uniform Shop (large and small sizes) – which will also get you a discount at the café (what a bonus, saving money and waste). In their own words, they want to be “one of the organisations that kick started the demise of the disposable”, and I certainly believe they are.
At www.goodwillwine.com.au, they produce and sell wine with 50% of their profit margin (approximately $2 per bottle) to charity or non-profit organisations such as The Orangutan Project, Australian Marine Conservation Society, and Sea Shepherd Australia Limited, ranging from Animals to Health Care to Social Charities and NPOs.