When breast cancer hit close to home, California winery owner Budge Brown fought back with philanthropy. Bottled under the Cleavage Creek label and featuring the faces of cancer survivors (including a couple of local ladies), Brown¹s varietals range in price from $18 to $50, with 10 percent of gross proceeds going to breast cancer research and support.
Follow the Money
You can take care of all of your holiday giving at GoodSearch.com, which pairs more than 62,000 international and local charities with hundreds of your favorite retailers. The concept is simple: Choose your charity, click to your favorite affiliated retailers’ Web sites, and watch your donation tally soar. With stores from Apple to Sephora to Zappos on board, donating to worthy local causes from Guide Dogs of the Desert to Palm Canyon Theatre has never been easier. www.goodsearch.com
Make a donation in a loved one’s name and help a child in a developing country connect with others. For $200, The Laptop Foundation will send a child an XO wireless laptop enabling him or her to chat, videoconference, read e-books, and collaborate online. Right out of the box, the XO’s antenna senses neighboring XO laptops and creates an instantaneous network — an essential feature considering that many XOs will be deployed in places where there is little or no telecommunication infrastructure. The XO stands up to extreme heat, humidity, and technological issues. Consider collaborating with friends or family to send a quantity of XOs to a location of your choosing. $200 per laptop. www.laptopfoundation.org
The Tipper Point
No one can accuse the Gores of turning a blind eye to the needs of the planet. Al’s cinematic oeuvre opened more eyes than a triple macchiato, and now Tipper’s artistry is capturing our attention. Drawing on skills honed as a young photojournalist in the South, Gore captures moments of beauty from Carthage to Capetown. Thanks to an alliance with Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, a portion of all proceeds from these signed, archival photos benefit The Climate Project, a nonprofit organization founded by the Gores and dedicated to preserving our planet. Photographs cost between $1,000 and $4,500 and are framed using 100 percent cotton rag board mats, custom hardwood frame, and conservation Plexiglas. Monarch Butterfly in Pond, $1,750. (800) 789-5401 or www.mgandbw.com
If the thought of animals turns your heart to goo, consider a gift with some teeth to it. Through The Living Desert’s Adopt-an-Animal program, donations from $40 to $1,000 help provide food, healthcare, and housing to animals from the reticulated giraffe ($1,000) to the Grevy’s zebra ($750) or Arabian oryx ($500). Prefer your patronage in a smaller package? Consider financing the good life for a Fennec fox ($150) or the long-suffering stink bug ($40). The Living Desert, 47900 Portola Ave., Palm Desert, 346-5694. www.livingdesert.org
The desert’s top-drawer secondhand stores make it easy to combine high style with charitable giving. At Revivals, 24 percent of the purchase price supports client services at Desert AIDS Project. Angel View Thrift Mart and Prestige Boutique direct your dollars to Angel View Crippled Children’s Foundation. With so many charitable thrift stores — from Stroke Recovery Center to Collectors Corner (which benefits Eisenhower Medical Center) — opportunities abound to shop for the greater good. Visit www.desertaidsproject.org for Revivals locations. For Angel View locations, visit www.angelview.org. Stroke Recovery Center, 2800 E. Alejo Road, Palm Springs, 323-7676, www.strokerecoverycenter.org. Collector’s Corner, 71280 Hwy. 111, Rancho Mirage, 346-1012.
Whether you’re talking about income taxes or profit sharing, 25 percent is a hefty amount. That’s why Zavida Gemstones makes our list of noteworthy do-gooders. The two former Starbucks executives who founded Zavida scout the globe, meet personally with jewelry-makers from India to Italy, pay fair prices, and give back 25 percent of the profits to struggling regions where jewelry and gemstones originate. The designs speak of the hands (not machines) that created them and show the world that your sense of global responsibility is as sophisticated as your sense of style. Aquamarine pendant in 18K yellow and white gold setting, $8,100, on freshwater pearl necklace, $190, handmade in Germany. www.zavidagemstones.com