Heart and Soul
Valentine's Day is around the corner (and I'm a big fan of planning a week in advance!). Whatever your feelings on the holiday – awesome, commercialized, unconcerned – here's a few ideas to maximize your Valentine's impact.
I posted on this last week, but Do1Thing wants your help on the 14th:
Do 1 Thing is a nationwide effort between photographers and journalists that raises awareness of homeless teenagers and encourages individuals to do one thing to assist them on Valentine's Day 2009.
If you're giving your significant other / partner / parents / children / best friends / dog a gift, consider a Just Give card. You can donate in someone's name, give the person in question a charity gift card so they can choose where to give, or buy something that benefits a charity.
Need cards? Save the Children is offering a bunch of awesome, original cards – and all proceeds benefit kids in need.
Chocolate is a pretty traditional gift, but it's also a pretty delicious gift. That said, socially responsible chocolate is the best. Kallari chocolate is organic, not harmful to the rainforest (part of the Rainforest Alliance), and is grown by a small collective of Ecuadoran cacao farmers who are working as a coop to benefit their community. Vintage Plantation is organic, sustainable, and also part of the Rainforest Alliance. Equal Exchange is organic and fair trade, as is Theo.
Flowers – just as traditional, but very pretty and potentially creative. Go organic by buying from Organic Bouquet or Johnny Greenseed.
If you don't have plans, or are looking for something interesting to do, contact local organizations about volunteering – they might be having special events.
More ideas? Need help making your Valentine's Day plan give back? Leave us a note in the comments!