Where you spend your money this year matters
It's no surprise that everyone has been shaken up by the Coronavirus this year but it has disproportionately affected people in poor countries. You can make a difference this year by supporting a local not-for-profit business as you support artisans in developing countries. Gifts of the World, a fair-trade gift shop in Schaumburg, and a ministry of Christ Community Mennonite Church, has been open for over 25 years and is run entirely by volunteers.
The gift shop purchases handmade products from Ten Thousand Villages and SERRV International, fair-trade organizations that work with artisans in countries such as Kenya, India, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Peru, and Haiti. The artisans receive half the price of the product before they even make it, to purchase materials and are paid the rest after the product is made and sent to the states. There is very little markup, so the artisans are able to be paid a fair wage. Sales of only $1,200, supports an artisan for one year in these developing countries.
By purchasing your gifts from Gifts of the World, you are helping these artisans earn enough money to be able to support their families and send their children to school. And you are giving someone a beautiful and unique gift, as well.
All of the products are handmade and most are made from recycled materials such as recycled paper made into jewelry, ornaments and nativities, bike chains into picture frames and clocks, circuit boards into picture frames and trinket boxes, stones and rocks made into paperweights, carved animals and beautiful sculptures, and gourds made into unique ornaments and nativities.
You can find all kinds of unique gifts for everyone on your list: Wood puzzles, jewelry, beautiful hand-dyed scarves, onyx and wood chess sets, children's leather banks, wall-hangings and many other one-of-a-kind gifts. Gifts of the World also has a huge selection of unique ornaments and nativities for your own decorations or as gifts for someone special. Gift certificates are available as well.
Although Gifts of the World has only been open on Saturdays during the pandemic, it will be open from 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. on Black Friday, Nov. 27, for a special sale -- everything in the store will be 15% off.
In December, the store will be open from 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. on Friday and Saturday through December (closed Dec. 25 and 26). Also in December, everyone will receive a gift with each purchase and you can enter a raffle for a gift basket. If you are unable to shop during those hours, you can call Manager Janice Ropp at (708) 289-0288 to schedule a private shopping appointment. Face masks are required and social distancing is followed. Gifts of the World is at 888 S. Roselle Road in Schaumburg in the blue house in front of the Big Barn Preschool and Christ Community Mennonite Church.
The store phone number is (847) 895-3676. Like "Gifts of the World Fair Trade Store" on Facebook to keep up with monthly specials.