Give a gift that gives back this festive season
Look beyond the usual retail rounds for a present with purpose.
The events of 2020 have forced us to take a reality check on life as usual. Many of us simplified our lives – at least temporarily – and appreciated new value in community.
If this shines a new light on the festive season, you might be thinking now about buying meaningful gifts that give something back to the community.
RACV supports several not-for-profit organisations that are offering great ideas for giving with a sense of purpose this year – from cookbooks and delicious hampers, to back-to-school donations for asylum seekers, and conservation-focused adopt a penguin and koala programs. So when drawing up your gift list this year, consider some of these ideas that also give back to the community.
'Adopt' a feathered or furry friend, like this eastern barred bandicoot, for the animal lover in your life.
Festive gifts with purpose
Bright side of the STREAT
STREAT works to prevent youth homelessness and disadvantage by offering a pathway from the street to a sustainable livelihood in hospitality, “one mouthful at a time”. And you can support their work in a delicious way by buying Christmas treats made in their Collingwood kitchen by young people who need a hand. STREAT offers traditional Christmas puddings priced from $20, gift-wrapped sets of conserves, or you could gift inspiration with STREAT’s new hard-cover cookbook – A Greater Hunger – filled with recipes and personal stories from its cafes, kitchens, bakery, roastery and classrooms. You can pick up from their Collingwood HQ, or orders worth $50 or $80 (depending on location) can be delivered for a fee.
Food for thought
Food is the most basic of human needs, and Victorian-based not-for-profit Eat Up Australia works to meet this need by delivering thousands of lunches a month to schools around Australia. It was set up in 2013 by Shepparton’s Lyndon Galea after he read a local newspaper article about children coming to school without anything to eat. Eat Up has extended its program to deliver emergency food boxes to vulnerable Victorians affected by the coronavirus pandemic, and its Christmas giving program encourages donations to support its work. A $50 donation will provide lunches for 50 schoolchildren, and $100 covers the cost of 10 food boxes for families in need. Downloadable ‘gift cards’ come with every donation made.
A taste of Australia
Give truly Australian craft, art, textiles and flavours while supporting Indigenous communities. The Tjanpi Weavers, representing more than 400 Anangu/Yarnangu women artists of the remote Central and Western Desert regions, offer one-of-a-kind sculptures, baskets, jewellery and other small woven objects, including a kit to teach yourself Indigenous weaving. Pick up a damper or wattle seed pavlova kit, pineapple or green tomato hot sauce, Indigenous herbal tea or spice sets and hampers from Torres Strait-owned Yarraville cafe Mabu Mabu. And from Babbarra Designs’ online shop, which employs and supports Aboriginal women in Arnhem Land, you can buy unique hand-printed textiles designed and sewn into dresses, tops, skirts and men’s ties in bold limited-edition local prints. You can also buy screen prints, lino prints and works on paper.