Organizations offer alternatives to typical Christmas gifts

NANAIMO – Putting a crimp in Christmas commercialism takes just a slight shift in thinking.

Sources for thinking outside the gift box often aren’t found in the shopping malls, which helps avoid lineups and jammed parking lots.

It’s hard to go wrong with giving books at Christmas – they don’t have to be new, either. Rummaging through used book stores can unearth old treasures and purchasers can promote literacy buying from stores like Literacy Central Vancouver Island’s Well Read Books in downtown Nanaimo.

Supporting Canadian producers, artists and authors, especially those in Nanaimo and on the Island, is easy at Strong Nations, located on Island Diesel Way.

The company started as a home-based online book retailer, but evolved into a publishing house for aboriginal writers from across Canada. Strong Nations also retails handbags, clothing, jewelry, teas, chocolates, art and even puppets.

There is a large section of aboriginal books for teachers, researchers, post-secondary students and those who want to improve their understanding and knowledge of First Nations culture.

“That’s exactly what we’re all about is building bridges across cultures,” said Terri Mack, store co-owner.

Support people overseas by buying a goat or chickens for a family in an impoverished nation. Organizations, such as Plan Canada, handle the purchase and delivery of farm livestock, including goats, chickens, sheep and pigs plus training in livestock management, allowing families to start small breeding and production businesses that provide financial security.

Please visit https://plancanada.ca.

Global Village in Longwood Station focuses on fair trade products from South America, India, Southeast Asia and Africa. Most everything in the store is handmade and there’s a story behind most products. Arghand soap is handmade by women in Afghanistan.

“There was a woman who was over in Afghanistan, who was a reporter, and she started this business up,” said Joan Hiemstra, Global Village operations manager. “The women produce it and there’s a church somewhere down in the States that imports it … and now here we are on Vancouver Island selling that soap.”

Just Posted

Kidney Foundation Nanaimo chapter president seeks ‘bail money’ in fundraiser

Randy Spensley will be on a scissor lift in a jailbird outfit Aug. 25 at Country Club Centre

MULTIMEDIA: Fair weather, food and fun at VIEX in Nanaimo

A gallery of the second day of the Vancouver Island Exhibition at Beban Park in Nanaimo

Urban planner wants to join city council to help build Nanaimo

Tyler Brown held his campaign launch this week

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

Former homeless camp ‘dump site’ being cleaned up along Millstone River

Nanaimo’s Jeff Callaghan has taken up the task of clearing trash from abandoned homeless camp

VIDEO: Fires break out in scrap piles at Harmac mill

Nanaimo firefighters got blazes under control in early morning hours Saturday

Fast food chains look to capitalize on vegetarian, vegan trend with new items

Seven per cent of Canadians consider themselves vegetarians and 2.3 per cent identify as vegans

Two hurt in car wreck at Northfield intersection

NANAIMO – Honda and Volkswagen crash at 10 p.m. Friday on old Island Highway

Nanaimo’s VIEX country fair underway

Vancouver Island Exhibition happening Aug. 17-19 at Beban Park

Vehicle catches fire on Rutherford Road

NANAIMO – No one hurt in incident, which happened at 2:30 p.m. Friday

Island swimmer halts journey across Strait of Juan de Fuca after hypothermia sets in

Victoria MS athlete Susan Simmons swam for eight-and-a-half hours in 9 C choppy waters

‘Hard on water:’ Smoke not the only long-range effect of wildfires

The project began more than 10 years ago after southern Alberta’s 2003 Lost Creek fire

B.C. VIEWS: Genuine aboriginal rights can be misused and discredited

Camp Cloud one of long line of protests falsely asserting title

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to march in Montreal’s Pride parade

Trudeau will end the day in his home riding of Papineau

Most Read