‘Tis The Season of Giving
'Tis the week before New Years and all through the house not a creature is stirring not even a mouse. My stockings are hung by the chimney with care while visions of philanthropy dance through the air.
Over 5,000 miles from the streets of NYC, reflecting on the tropical shores of Hawaii, I know the holiday spirit of giving is alive. My day starts with a quick workout in the gym. As the treadmill spins I surf my favorite news networks: on CNN, Alina Cho's special broadcast of BIG STARS, BIG GIVING previews before tonight's airing; HLN, the local news, reports on “The Season Of Giving.” One last click on the remote and I land on MSNBC, today's story, “Ordinary People, Extraordinary Giving.”
Now that my workout is over I scurry over to the resort’s shop for some last minute holidaygifts. To my delight I am able to buy some gifts that keep on giving. James Perse T-shirts for the guys. What I love about this company is their recycling campaign, What Comes Around Goes Around. Donate an old James Perse T-shirt for store credit, the T-shirts are then re-conditioned, re-dyed and donated to homeless men, women and children.
I hit the jackpot finding gifts for the girls. There are beautiful handmade bags from Africa by a company called Global Girls that provides micro-financing opportunities for women. I also discover beautiful cover-ups for the beach by LemLem. Super model/ actress and World Health Organization's Goodwill Ambassador for Maternal Newborn and Child Health, Liya Kebede, discovered traditional weavers in her home country of Ethiopia were losing their jobs. Because of this, Liya was inspired to start Lemlem in 2007 as a way to inspire economic independence in her native country as well as to preserve the art of weaving. My favorite gift of the day is created by a young jewelry maker from the West Coast who's family has a home on the Big Island. Jordan Sholem is a beautiful 17 year old high school senior who was just accepted into college. Her inspiration for the bracelets comes from Hawaii, where she grew up with her family, friends and "O"hana (beloved neighbors). She felt she needed to do something when the recession hit hard on the Big Island. Many people lost their jobs and had to move away. So with her own personal savings she invested in some small diamond charms and beads to make bracelets. Her bracelets are made from ebony wood, coconut wood, coral, turquoise and freshwater pearls. She donates 100% of her profits to the Hualalai O'hana Foundation (www.hualalaiohanafoundation.org). Their dollars help send Hawaiian kids to college and graduate school and provide health care for those in need. Donations also support the North Hawaii Community Hospital. The bracelets make the perfect mother-daughter gifts. I can’t resist.
Finally I grab my paper and head to the beach. Time to catch up on my daily reading. In the New York Times I catch up with the story on my friend Arden Wohl, who found time during this busy Holiday season to host a party at the Little Cupcake Bake shop in Nolita to raise awareness for the Endangered Species Coalition.
The next article I read is on the joy of second hand giving. Highlighting a lot of fun ways to recycle and fund-raise for gifts.
After sifting through the market details and the news on the 28 month high on Soybeans in The Wall Street Journal I turn to my favorite op-ed to read about the Tea Partiers and the Spirit Of Giving.
As the New Year begins I give thanks knowing our country is filled with caring loving people who give back when their able so that others have hope.
A Happy New Year to all and to all a goodnight.
Our CSR Cooperative theme for 2011 is please "choose" wisely and you CAN make a difference!
Take a look at the following story we did this month calledhttp://www.huffingtonpost.com/judy-shapiro/a-marketers-moment-of-sha_b_798730.htmlfor more on this! We will be launching a celebrity driven social media campiagn around it in Jan 2011!