You know I love me some good baby gifts, as evidenced by the extensive baby registry I’ve set up for my fake baby, Flick. But what do you get for expecting parents who seem to already have all the essentials, or for someone who you have no idea what to get?
Well let me tell ya, I think nothing makes a more unique baby gift than something that provides direct help to another parent or child in need.
Here’s my list of fantastic baby gifts that give back!
These swaddlers and sleep sacks are not only gorgeous, but with every purchase a premature or underweight baby in a developing country will be helped with an Embrace Infant Warmer so they aren’t reliant on scarce (or unavailable) incubators. I personally like the Swaddle/Sleep Bag combo because it’s like a two-fer!
Soapbox Soaps combines my love of yummy-smelling soaps with a philanthropic mission to provide hygiene products and clean water to families in developing countries. For every bar of soap sold, SoapBox donates another bar of soap to a person in-need and every shampoo purchase provides a month of clean water. You can even find this brand at Target.
TOMs started out selling cute, comfy shoes and has always pledged to donate a pair of shoes to a child in a developing country with every purchase. Fast forward 10 years and now TOMs sells shoes, bags, eyewear, and coffee! They still use the one-to-one philanthropy model, so your shoe purchase buys a child a pair of shoes, a bag purchase buys someone a safe birth, a coffee purchase provides someone with clean water, etc.
Psst: these are also one of the brands voted by readers as the most comfortable to wear during pregnancy.
Cuddle + Kind
If you’d like to get someone a soft, adorable stuffed animal or doll for baby’s nursery, consider the Cuddle + Kind line. Their dolls are hand-embroidered and completely hand made from natural cotton. For every one you purchase the company feeds 10 hungry children through a partnership with World Food Program USA. I’m partial myself to Benedict, the stuffed bunny who wears a bowtie and red gasses.
Fed (Fun Eating Devices)
I met one of the creators of this kids utensils at the ABC Expo and goshdarnit, his enthusiasm was infectious. When baby starts eating real food the Sporkman spoon/fork makes eating more fun and helps hone those fine motor skills. And proceeds from every sale go to feed hungry kids through Stop Hunger Now.
With Kangu, you can give the gift of a safe birth to a woman living below the poverty line in her country. This unique website shows you the photos and bios of each of the moms who need help. The success stories on the website are moving!
Plan Canada’s mission is to get kids out of poverty in under-developed countries by giving them the help and skills they need to thrive. They help provide clean water, develop health programs, and they have an extensive school improvement program.
Unicef serves over 150 countries worldwide and has so many cool options for gifts that would be meaningful to any mother. You can make a gift in the name of a new baby and pick from a polio vaccine, a baby scale, therapeutic milk or food, a child development kit, and the list goes on.