Shopping at Signal Crest United Methodist Church's "Presents with a Purpose" fair trade market allows gift-givers to make an impact on more than just the gift's recipient.
The market features crafts by artisans from around the world who receive a fair price for their work, alongside items sold to benefit local nonprofits.
Free and open to the community, the third annual event is being held inside the church in the Crest Center Sunday, Oct. 28 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
"All the money made goes back to the fair trade artisans or the local nonprofits that [the vendors] work with," said event organizer Kelly Woodard. "Christmas can be such a crazy time of year, and it's a time we are becoming really self-focused. This market is a way we can help families we will never meet to eat or clothe their children."
Attendees can help people affected by HIV by purchasing Ethiopian coffee from Blue Nile Traders, or contribute to the livelihood of an artist trying to support a family by selecting an item from the Go Fish booth. Rubble Wear's necklaces, which will also be available for sale at the market, are crafted from the rubble of orphanages in Haiti left behind after the devastating earthquake that hit the country in 2010. Their sale will provide housing for nannies who care for the orphans, said Woodard.
Funds from the sale of pieces at Hart Gallery's booth will go to the local homeless artisans who created them, and wreaths sold by Young Life will send local at-risk youth to camp this summer, she said.
The market has several new vendors participating this year, such as Beads for Life, which sells jewelry made from recyled paper to benefit women who are victims of the sex slave trade.
"During the Christmas season, we often buy something that may not have any meaning because we feel like we have to buy something," said Woodard. "This is a way for us to help others instead of making a clothing company larger because we bought their product at the mall."