February is the month we celebrate Valentine’s Day, the Month of Love, and you can see it’s nearly here: red-heart cards, boxes of chocolate, love quotes and bouquets of flowers are all starting to appear in shops across the country.
Now Valentine’s Day is heavily commercialised and loaded with expectations, but there is also a charitable way to love and show it.
Here is a list of 6 ways to spread Charitable Love during this month, to make Valentine's Day special to as many people as possible.
1) Raise funds for a charity buying a special gift for your loved ones
If you are part of CAN Mezzanine's community, you can take advantage of Teen's Unite makeup pop-up shops, that will take place in our Borough and Old Street locations on the 4th and 5th of February.
Teens Unite sells high-quality makeup products to fund their projects dedicated to young people fighting cancer: check our calendar on Cannect for more details!
2) Make your own traditions!
Changing someone else's life can be a good new tradition to create for your Valentine's Day 2019. You can choose to donate to or volunteer with charities that help and support homeless people, like Church Homeless Trust.
You can also skip the expensive special-occasion-dinner and put the money towards buying donation items for the local Food Bank instead.
You can find a list of the Food Banks all around the UK here by visiting The Trussel Trust.
3) Turn a “stranger” into a new friend!
Give up the lovey-dovey cards and opt for an uplifting note addressed to an almost stranger. Share these cards with people like a neighbour you have yet to officially meet or a cashier at the grocery store you frequent.
Take some actions in your office or your community that can make the people around you happier: it's good for your mental health and theirs as well.
Have a look here for more tips to be happier and make others happy.
Photo Credit: Action for Happiness
4) Share the love!
Adopt a cat or dog from your local animal shelter. Your new fuzzy friend will appreciate the hugs!
5) Choose a Social Enterprise Café or restaurant for your first date!
If you have a date this Valentine’s Day, keep it simple and find a social enterprise café or restaurant in your area.
From coffee brands giving ex-offenders a second chance to cafés selling cookies (and more) to improve literacy rates in its local community, and light-filled hangouts giving the homeless a second shot, our capital is full of wonderful social enterprise using food and drink to make a difference.
For example you could try:
- Well Kneaded - a sourdough pizzeria employing young people from marginalised communities in SW London
- Coffee Cake and Kisses
Photo Credit (including cover image): Harry Specters
6) Buy a charitable gift!
Show your love to your dearest ones by buying them a gift that will help other people as well. Many charities have a list of gifts that will improve someone else's life. If you are looking for some suggestions, here you can find some ideas!
- Chilpa - fairly traded, ethical & handmade Mexican accessories.
- Harry Specters - Chocolate aiming for a positive social change.
- Arthur&Henry - handmade ethical shirts.
- Toast Ale - Beer brewed with fresh surplus bread, to end food waist.
For your Bestie:
- Café Direct - the first UK coffee brand to be awarded with B Corp Certification. The same coffee we us in CAN's buildings!
- Yumbles - food marketplace committed to making healthy and all-natural food accessible to conscious food eaters across the UK.