Longing for less mall madness and more goodwill toward mankind this holiday season? Many businesses and organizations offer you more than a chance to buy a gift: They allow you to help nonprofit groups raise money for a worthy cause.
It's simple: You buy a gift for someone on your list and a portion of the proceeds goes to charity. You won't spend any more time or money than you would have hitting the mall to do your shopping. But the feel-good factor is off the charts. Think of it as do-gooder multi-tasking.
We put together a SLIDE SHOW of 14 gift ideas that will help you cross every name off your list and help humanity at the same time.
One of the trendiest brands for philanthropic shopping is the (PRODUCT) RED initiative, launched by Bobby Shriver and U2's Bono in 2006. With the help of celebrity faces and big-name companies (including Apple, Hallmark, Motorola and Gap) this project has contributed more than $45 million in just over a year to the Global Fund -- a charity working to eliminate AIDS in Africa. That's nine times more than what was raised from the private sector in Global Fund's first four years.
Many nonprofit organizations -- including Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the American Diabetes Association, and Oxfam America -- offer entire catalogs and online shops to help raise funds for their respective missions. The idea is to harness consumer power for a good cause. So if you don't see your favorite group in our slide show, check out its Web site to see if it has any gift offerings that speak to your sensitivities. There's a good chance it will.
Go ahead. Do some do-good shopping this year. You'll put a little cheer back in to your holiday and help save the world at the same time.
SLIDE SHOW: Gifts That Give Twice