Friday, December 22

Holiday Like You Give A Damn


Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or just the fact that you get a couple days off from work, Blog Like You Give a Damn and the folks from Architecture for Humanity | Minnesota would like to wish everybody out there a Happy Holiday. I hope you enjoy this brief seasonal miscellany:

Changing the Present
Americans spend 250 billion dollars every year just buying each other gifts. Imagine what would happen if we could capture just a portion of that and direct it into worldchanging organizations and charities.

OK, now stop imagining, and check out

ChangingThePresent envisions a new way to show someone you care. Rather then buy dad a new electric shaver, why not clear 10 square meters of a minefield for him ($30) or help feed an HIV patient for 6 months for him ($60). There are several hundred charities to choose from and ChangingThePresent has put them all at your fingertips, so matter who you are gifting, you will find a cause you can both be proud of.

[Via WorldChanging]

2 New Magazines That Give a Damn (Great Gift Ideas)
GOOD Magazine (6 issues) - $20 (The full amount of your subscription fee goes to the charitable organization of your choice.)

Mission: "While so much of today's media is taking up our space, dumbing us down, and impeding our productivity, GOOD exists to add value. Through a print magazine, feature and documentary films, original multimedia content and local events, GOOD is providing a platform for the ideas, people, and businesses that are driving change in the world."

NEED Magazine (4 issues) - $27.

Mission: "NEED magazine is an artistic hope-filled publication focusing on life changing humanitarian efforts at home and abroad. NEED magazine reveals the remarkable stories of people involved throughout the entire humanitarian aid process: survivors, workers, funders, and heroes. NEED magazine's dynamic visual narrative is not only compelling, but also drives awareness, involvement, personal connection, and contributions."
[Thanks for the heads up Maureen!]

Ikea Gives the Gift of Non-Gasoline Dependent Transportation
Ikea UK has given all 9,000 of it's employees a new bicycle for Christmas, as well as a 15% subsidy on public transportation. "The bike is a fun present but there is a serious message. We all have a responsibility to do what we can to protect the environment," says Ikea's UK manager, Peter Hogsted.

In addition to charging for the use of plastic bags and giving customers the option of planting a tree for one extra dollar when they check out, Ikea seems to be one international corporation that "gets it." More power to them!

Happy Holidays! See you in the New Year!

1 comment:

THD said...

The concept of this is fantastic. What I don't understand is how the dollar amount for a given charity is arrived upon? Is that by the non-profit or by ChangingThePresent?

I question this because I looked at some of the charities in the health space and for example they say one place that cataract surgery in India costs $100 and in another it costs $60 (links at end of post). I have no idea where these numbers come from, but it has been well documented that cataract surgery in India costs closer to $25-30. Again, this is a great idea in theory, but there needs to be transparency in the process.