GreenheartShop-JetSetterSome families have decided to trim their holiday buying list while others feel the holidays are a time for getting together with family, hope, and sharing gifts. Most Americans, despite their religious backgrounds (or lack thereof) give gifts to one another during the holidays whether it is to co-workers, clients, friends, family members or teachers.

Rather than buying gifts for the sake of buying gifts, why not make the purchase more meaningful this year by considering the impact of your purchase? Pledge to buy at least one of your holiday gifts this year a fair trade gift.

The ripple effect of that decision can be powerful. By buying a fair trade gift, you are sharing with the recipient the feeling that you cared enough about the person and their gift to ensure that the person who made it received a fair wage for their work, that no child labor or sweat shop labor was used in the production, and the monies received by the artisans in the developing country will benefit not only that one artisan, but their family and community.

Stumped for ideas on what to get your father? Or your pet? The Fair Trade Federation has done the homework and its beautifully-illustrated and edited Fair Trade Holiday Gift Guide makes it easy to honor your fair trade gift pledge.  Click on the guide and flip through its pages. Each product recommendation includes a hyperlink to make it easier to visit each website to review offerings.

For example, shown here is the Jet Setter set from Greenheart Shop, a Chicago-based shop which offers a great selection of eco-friendly and fair trade gifts from more than 30 developing countries (both in store and online). This set is less than $50 and can be given together or separate and would make a great gift for a colleague, friend who enjoys traveling or a teacher (or, ahem, a traveling mom perhaps – hint hint?).

Make the pledge. Choose fair trade this holiday season. Make a difference and honor the holidays for what they are supposed to mean – celebrating the season with friends and family and not exploiting others in the process.

What did you find this year? Let us know in the comments – we’d love to hear what fair trade gift you’re giving!

Megy Karydes, Founder

World Shoppe

Follow us on Facebook or Twitter @worldshoppe!