Mother’s Day Gifts That Give Back

By Cassandra Staff
Originally posted April 28th on Medium

Want to give Mom a gift that shows your love for her and also spreads love to others around the world? Purchase a one-of-a-kind gift made by a social enterprise — a business that creates positive change in poor communities.

Here are five great Mother’s Day gift suggestions that do double duty:

  • Hand-woven baskets are symbols of wealth of friends, family and life in some African communities. Makers of these baskets save money, buy land, and create new businesses. From $19 (Source: All Across Africa)
  • Organic coffee, grown on small farms in Kenya, offers a living wage to women — from the slums of Kibera — who work to put their children through school. From $7 (Source: Vava Coffee)
  • Solar lights enable households without electricity to read and work at night. From $20 (Source: Nokero)
  • Fine modern jewelry handmade by Kenyan artisans from sustainable materials. From $20 (Source: Soko)
  • Contemporary textiles produced by traditional craftspeople in the Kumaon Himalayas are made with earth-friendly colors from plant-based pigments. From $15 (Source: Avani)

These social enterprises, all affiliated with the Global Social Benefit Institute at Santa Clara University’s Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship, showcase how innovation — and entrepreneurship in service to humanity — can result in beautifully crafted products as well as a path out of poverty for their creators.

Now go on: Make your Mama proud.

Cassandra Staff hopes that a carefully chosen Mother’s Day gift for her Mom will atone for her cringe-worthy ‘Sassy Cassy’ teenage years. Now mother to two-year-old Lucille, Staff is also director, Global Social Benefit Institute, at Santa Clara University’s Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship.