How do you shop for Christmas gifts for a tween girl? These days, they’re not quite child, and not quite adolescent. You don’t want to insult a tween with something too childish, yet you don’t want to encourage them to grow up too fast. If you’re looking for tween Christmas stocking stuffers, or just small gifts for tween girls, why not ditch the whole toy scene and look for some good fair trade stocking stuffers? Fair trade items are produced and sold by means that ensure that producers receive a fair price for their goods and that goods are produced in an environmentally sustainable fashion. Here are some Christmas gifts available from two well-known online shops specializing in fair trade items.
Ten Thousand Villages
Ten Thousand Villages is a member of both the International Fair Trade Association and the Fair Trade Federation, “both of which aim to improve the livelihood of disadvantaged people in developing countries and to change unfair structures of international trade.” (Ten Thousand Villages website, “How We Practice Fair Trade”). They have a number of items tagged as stocking stuffers; here are a few that would be great Christmas stocking stuffers for tween girls.
Tween girls are often beginning to think about personal hygiene and beautification – and if they aren’t, this is an opportune time to teach them about hygiene! Make it a fragrant experience with handmade soaps from India for $12.
Girls may also enjoy carrying change in a mirrored coin purse from India ($12). If the tween girl in your life is a writer or an artist, she may like the Zig-Zag Stitching Journal from Bangladesh ($12). Finally, if your tween girl is more into sports and games, perhaps she’d like Guatemalan Hackey Sack (only $6).
Ten Thousand Villages products are also available through their brick and mortar stores in various locations, through other fair trade retailers, and at festival sales often held by community groups.
Global Exchange is actually an international human rights organization. Through various programs and projects, they seek to promote environmental, political and social justice. The Global Exchange Store is just one part of this. All items sold in Global Exchange stores are verified as fair trade items.
Here are some tween girl-specific Christmas gifts from Global Exchange’s stocking stuffer page:
Candy is a traditional Christmas stocking stuffer for all ages. Global Exchange has the traditional gold foil-wrapped chocolate coins, made from fair trade chocolate. A bag of 17 coins is $5.95. Or, you can get a box of chocolates; a 9-piece chocolate assortment is $9.95.
Tween girls can make their clothes smell good with these Vetiver Sachets for $11.50, or take a fragrant bath with Herbal Bath Bags made by Native Americans in the southwestern United States.
Your tween girl will love putting her treasures in a fragrant Vietnamese Cinnamon Heart Box ($12.50). These boxes are actually made from the bark of cinnamon trees.
If your tween girl enjoys flowers and plants, get her a Jing Garden in a Can ($11.50). A Chinese tradition, these kits include seeds and step by step directions. Jing gardens are traditionally meant to help one achieve inner peace and tranquility.
Global Exchange items are also available through brick and mortar stores in Portland, Berkeley and San Francisco.
Finally, if you’re interested in fairly traded stocking stuffers and Christmas gifts for tween girls or others, look for shops and festivals in your local area. Buying from local shops and artisans is an excellent way to shop sustainably and make sure people in your area have the opportunity to earn a fair income from their work.