by Carissa Tham February 03, 2016

At some point in your life, you must have gotten a little in too deep into the valentine VS. anti-valentine debate. No matter your thoughts on it, don’t forget that perhaps Valentine’s Day is not only about roses and romantic date nights—it is the opportunity to give and spread more love in this world. How many days in a year do we have dedicated to our loved ones? Not many. Even though we all know that we should appreciate our loved ones everyday, life often gets in the way and we get too caught up with our personal lives. Valentine’s Day is a great way to pause for a moment and remember the ones for whom you’re thankful for in your life. We humans are social beings, after all. Without friends and family, we would not get the social support that’s necessary for us to flourish.

The tradition of gift giving on Valentine’s Day also should not be restricted to lovers; you can also gift your friends and family to show them how much you care! The act of gift giving is symbolic and represents the thought and effort you’ve put into finding something that your gift receiver will enjoy and appreciate. Gifts are always best when they are meaningful. And what’s more meaningful that giving your loved one a gift that gives back? Does your loved one have a social cause that lies close to her heart? This week, we’ve put together a gift giving guide that’s meaningful, socially responsible and helps some very important causes.

For the Homelessness Advocate

Inspire Dainty XL necklace from The Giving Keys

For your loved one who cares deeply about homelessness and helping those in need of financial aid, the Inspire Dainty XL necklace from The Giving Keys is a great option. The Giving Keys employs those transitioning out of homelessness in Los Angeles to make key necklaces and other jewelry that represent strength. Each necklace is engraved with an inspirational word to convey and inspire strength in the necklace wearer. The process of giving a Giving Keys necklace is also symbolic as the receiver can in turn pay it forward by giving the necklace to others who may need strength. Each key pendant carries a meaningful story behind it! Read more about The Giving Keys’ impact on the community here.

For the Vulnerable Youth Advocate

Southwest blanket by Sackcloth & Ashes

Sackcloth & AshesSouthwest blanket is perfect for both indoor and outdoor use and is great for the Vulnerable Youth Advocate in your life. Our partnership with Sackcloth & Ashes is incredibly meaningful to us, just as each and every one of our partnerships are. With every blanket purchased, one fleece blanket is donated to YESS (Youth Empowerment & Support Services), a local youth shelter in Edmonton.

They say our youth are the leaders of tomorrow, but imagine if all our youth have no access to basic human necessities like food, shelter, education and a wholesome environment to grow up in? A person’s formative years occurs in his or her youth, and the lack of a wholesome environment and basic human necessities can be detrimental to his or her later years. The road to adulthood is never easy, but many youth find their path littered with problems far more complex than the majority of their peers. Vulnerable youth includes those who face complex interconnected problems as a result of their poverty, ethnicity, homelessness, mental and physical illness in the family etc.. As the McCeary Centre Society’s Vulnerable Youth Report states:

“For these youth, the journey is filled with obstacles and stressors that can derail healthy development, leaving them vulnerable to poorer health and diminished achievement. Vulnerable youth are at greater risk for not finishing school, experiencing homelessness, problem substance use, and other health-compromising behaviours. Their difficult life situations and disconnection from meaningful relationships can leave some vulnerable youth at risk for emotional distress and some even attempt suicide.”

It becomes apparent that we need multiple systems in place to prevent, protect and help these vulnerable youth to offer them hope and the chance for a more wholesome life.

For the One Who Believes in Lifting Rural Communities Out of Poverty

The Fall Set Bracelet by Wakami

The Fall Set Bracelet by Wakami is a great addition for any casual outfit. What’s best is that it suits both men and women! Wakami works closely with our non-profit partner Comunidades de la Tierra to create sustainable, income-generating opportunities for people in isolated areas of Guatemala. This is done by providing these communities with the resources sustain themselves in various ways such as education, water filters, stoves etc. to improve their lives and build their own income-generating businesses. While donating money to charity is a great way to give back to the less privileged and to even out the worldwide income gap, sometimes, money only provides short term relief to communities in deep poverty. Financial donations help relieve problems on the surface, but there are often deep-seated problems that money alone cannot solve. Organizations like Comunidades de la Tierra address the root of these problems and tackle them head-on, improving the lives of these communities not only for the current generation, but for generations to come.

We hope we’ve given you some awesome gift ideas for that special someone, whether that’s a friend, lover or family member! What’s your favourite Benefair product to gift your loved one? We’d love to hear from you!




Carissa Tham
Carissa Tham


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