Valentine’s Day: Guide to Spreading Your Love Locally and Socially

January 22, 2015

About 60% of people in North America will be making Valentine’s Day purchases this year, totaling about $20 billion. In most communities, great gifts are available from independent restaurants, florists, galleries, jewelers and other local businesses, social enterprises, and co-operatives — most of which compete directly against chains and online giants. This makes the preceding weeks a great time to convey the value of “going local” and “going social” as shifting even a small percentage of that spending to local independent businesses and to organizations with a social mission can yield a big boost for your community.

To help find local and social gifts for your special loved one we’ve created a short guide. Want to promote “going local” with images like the one to the right? Check out the excellent Valentine’s post by our friends at the American Independent Business Alliance for links to download the poster and other fun materials. 

Where to Find Local Gift Ideas

SoKind Online Registry
SoKind is a registry service that encourages the giving of homemade gifts, charitable donations, secondhand goods, experiences, time, and day-of-event help. [more]

Buy Local Gifts in BC
LOCO is a growing alliance of local companies working to strengthen our communities, grow the local economy and build strong, sustainable businesses. This Valentine’s buy a gift from a LOCO member. [more]

Buy Local Gifts in Edmonton
The Local Good is Edmonton’s online hub for local and green living. On their website you’ll find a resource directory, events, local food, and more. [more]

Buy Local Gifts in Calgary
REAP Calgary is a not-for-profit association for locally owned businesses that care about the community and the environment. Check out their directory of members to find a great gift. [more]

Where to Find Social Gift Ideas

Use the Social Enterprise Marketplace to Find Gifts from Social Enteprises
Interested in buying from social enterprises this Valentine’s? Check out this online marketplace from the Social Enterprise Canada to research social enterprises by name, industry, location and/or the social purpose they achieve. [more]

Buy a Gift from a Social Enterprise in British Columbia
Enterprising Non-Profits BC has compiled a list of gift ideas from social enteprises through the province. [more]

Buy a Gift from a Social Enterprise in Ontario
This Valentine’s why not make a purchase that won’t just make the receiver happy, but will also benefit Ontario, and your local community? [more]

Buy a Gift from a Co-operative in Ontario
Check out the Ontario Co-operative Association’s director of co-ops in Ontario for gift ideas near you. [more]



Happy Valentine’s from the Canadian CED Network!