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In an effort to protect Indian artisans against the flood of similar foreign made products, the Indian textile ministry has appealed to Indian companies to purchase locally made handicrafts and handloom items as corporate gifts. An appeal that seems well-timed as the Indian festival season is around the corner, and companies will be giving gifts to their employees and clients to celebrate the various occasions. Another viable solution that corporate India can partake in is by using their CSR budgets to “adopt” artisan clusters

While such a solution may seem more dire in a third world country such as India, this strategy does hold some relevance to companies in North America as well. As the push to becoming more socially-conscious drives the social enterprise sector, it also affects the traditional for-profit sector as well. Corporate Canada should also be considering where their corporate gifting dollars go and how they can best use their CSR funds.

Perhaps this holiday season (though it is still a while away), companies here in Canada should consider using sustainable or fair-trade products in their gifting decisions. At Shopanthropic, we have a variety of products (such as journals, yoga bags, ethical bags or even clutches) that would be great corporate gifts this winter!

Sometimes the most powerful solutions are the most unconventional ones. Perhaps it is in attaching the social cause to the corporate cause that social enterprise can reach the mainstream population.