Best Of 2011: Place to Buy a Thoughtful, Inexpensive Gift

Sure, "thoughtful" can mean showing consideration for the gift recipient. But it's also being conscious about how your purchases impact the people who made those gifts. Sarah Ray and Donavan Kennedy founded Yobel Market in 2008 to support Third World artisans and to educate consumers, and they've been pleasantly surprised by the response. "We were so proud of the Colorado Springs community for rising up and supporting fair and equitable trade with both their Christmas and personal purchases last year," they say via e-mail from Juarez, Mexico. They're working with female entrepreneurs there and will soon stock their Christmas ornaments, baby clothing and scarves. For out-of-the-box gifts, consider buying a goat for a Rwandan village or a brick for a Ugandan school through Yobel's sponsor program. — Rhonda Van Pelt

IndyPick • Best Of 2010: Argument for Fairness

Earlier this year, Yobel founders Sarah Ray and Donavan Kennedy opened an Old Colorado City storefront for their fair-trade craft business, which had previously exhibited only at local holiday markets and the like. The expansion is significant for them and the nine "people groups" in eight countries from which they buy goods. (Learn more about the groups and shop online at yobelmarket.com.) Ray and Kennedy regularly travel internationally to meet with partner groups, as well as to forge new craft contacts. Each dollar spent in their store on artistic, handcrafted jewelry and clothing (as well as chocolate, coffee and more) directly helps impoverished communities. Cheers to Yobel for providing truly socially conscious shopping. —Matthew Schniper


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