7 Quick Takes: Christmas Gifts That Matter Edition

7 Quick Takes

With Thanksgiving being next Thursday, it means that Black Friday is afoot and the Christmas shopping season is starting. Instead of braving the malls and dealing with crush of people, I thought I’d give you seven gift catalogs. There are SOOOOOO many more, so I’ll link the extra ones in Take #7.

— 1 —

Kiva.Org Kiva gives you an opportunity to participate in microlending. A $25 loan can be made to people in 77 countries, and the people are using the money for things like education, starting businesses, repairing houses, buying equipment to expand businesses, etc. I tend to lend to Muslim women in the Middle East. When the loan is paid back, they can cut you a check for the $25, or you can re-lend it. The day I find out that I have $25 in my Kiva account is always a wonderful one because I get to find another person in whom I can invest. In the last 13 years, I have made 22 loans and only one person has defaulted. (Truthfully, I have no regrets there because I don’t lend money that I can’t afford to lose.) Even in my most financially destitute times, I have always re-lent the money because it makes me feel like I can do something in the midst of hard circumstances in my life.

If you want to gift someone the opportunity to make a loan, click here. If you want to buy products from Kiva artisans, click here.

— 2 —

Heifer International. Heifer International has branched out from donating livestock to empowering women and caring for the earth. I used to gifts shares of animals to people for holidays, and I’ve tithed to them on and off for years.

Their gift catalog is here.

— 3 —

International Rescue Committee. The International Rescue Committee helps people whose live and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to rebuild their lives. Their stuff tends to pop up a lot on my Facebook wall, and their gift catalog was one that I knew I had to include. I think my favorite gifts give girls the chance to go to school. Various celebrities and businesses have put together gift collections of projects they support. This is a group that does a lot with refugees, which warms my heart greatly.

Their gift catalog is here.

— 4 —

Donors Choose. Donors Choose is one of my favorite groups. One of the people in my church’s choir had a project funded through them, and it was amazing to get to be part of that. I know some of the kids benefitted by that project, and I’m planning on helping to fund a couple of projects at my local middle school. You can get gift cards from them that allow the recipient to fund part of a project of their choice.

Stephen Colbert is a HUGE supporter of theirs and funded every project in South Carolina several years ago. He is on the board and had the pleasure of announcing that the company Ripple and its executives donated enough last year to fund EVERY project on the site.

To purchase a gift card, click here.

— 5 —

Catholic Relief Services. I’m among a handful of non-Catholics who do Quick Takes, so I wanted to share the CRS gift catalog in case people want to give to a Catholic organization. Like many of the others, there is a large spectrum of areas in which they work and gifts at many different price points. Notable ones include a welcome kit for victims of trafficking that has basic supplies for them to help them feel comfort after their escape, health exams for kids, and school uniforms. (To be perfectly honest, some of the gifts are making me teary because I wish I could buy one of each.)

Their gift catalog is here.

— 6 —

Save the Children. You can send a kid to camp, buy a soccer ball for a kid, help create a community book bank, and comfort a migrant child among other things.

Their gift catalog is here.

— 7 —

Everything else. Here are the other ones I didn’t have the space to explain.

International Justice Mission
Outreach International
World Vision
UNICEF Inspired Gifts

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.