Monday, February 14, 2011

Have a Heart: Valentine's Gifts that Give Back

It's Valentine's Day and the barraging of pink carnations, candy hearts, and chocolate is in full effect. Most known as a holiday for romantics to express their love for each other, and for everyone else is often dreaded or altogether ignored. But whatever you decide to do on this day, you can make a real impact on the lives of millions of other people around the world.

So how can you give back this Valentine's Day?

One of the best ways is to look for flowers with a Fairtrade Mark. Fair trade blooms provide healthier working conditions and avoid toxic chemicals. So why not choose a gift that shows love for the Earth and respect for those who made it?

Spread the love this holiday by choosing Fairtrade chocolate. Divine Chocolate is the only Fairtrade company which is 45% owned by the farmers. The dividends of ownership not only provide monetary rewards but also a sense of dignity to the collective of workers laboring to get their products to mass market. Other Fairtrade chocolates include: Theo, Equal Exchange, Green & Black.

Valentine Run
Charity walk/runs, and bicycle events raise money to help others around the world. Besides being good for you, running, walking, and cycling can now be good for others. For run/walk/bike events in your area check out The American Heart Association and

Charity Cards
These cards and gift certificates make wonderful gifts because they allow the gift-recipient to select the charities they would like to give to. Check them out here: Charity Choice.

Other Gifts
Organizations such as Oxfam provide a wide range of beautiful gifts for your loved ones that also support meaningful solutions to poverty.

These are just a few ideas, there are many more possibilities out there to help others and do good this Valentine's Day.

-Martina Georgieva