the WORLDby how you

Krochet Kids began with the incredible story of three college-age guys who liked to crochet sharing that skill with refugee women in Uganda.  "Every purchase impacts a life and every product is hand-signed by the lady who made it."  They sell adorable crocheted stuffed animals.

Market Haiti is " a market place designed to empower & market Haitian artisans in their work". They "are officially endorsed by the Apparent Project, and are also working with other artisans in Haiti to make a difference in the lives of working families."  They sell beautifully sewn Haitian dolls representing different parts of Haiti (Note: Ideal for older children, as these are collector items).

WorldCraftsSM "develops sustainable, fair-trade businesses among impoverished people around the world."  Their "vision is to offer an income with dignity and the hope of everlasting life to every person on earth."  They have educational preschool puzzles and finger puppets.

For even more ethical toy shopping links, check out:
The Art of Simple's Ethical Shopping Guide: Toys,

Hands Producing Hope works in Rwanda and Costa Rica with a mission of "providing the economic, educational, and spiritual resources necessary to empower remote communities to rise above poverty."  They offer crocheted vegetables for kids to play with.

Ten Thousand Villages started 65 years ago with the Mennonite Central Committee to "provide sustainable economic opportunities for artisans in developing countries by creating a viable marketplace for their products in North America."  Today they work with thousands of artisans in 38 countries. They sell cute handcrafted toys for both girls and boys.  (To also find their products in a retail location near you, click here.)

Sweatshop-Free Toys

31 Bits sells jewelry handmade by women rising out of poverty in Uganda and Indonesia.  "The “31” comes from Proverbs 31, where it describes a diligent woman providing and caring for her family.  The “bits” comes from what the beads are made out of…bits of paper!"  They offer jewelry kits for kids to make their own jewelry, featuring their beautiful handmade beads.

Vi Bella Jewelry provides employment in Haiti and their mission "is centered on providing a path out of poverty for our artisans and a deep desire to form a community for them that is encouraging and prayerful."  they offer beautiful girl's jewelry.

Amani ya Juu "means 'Peace from Above'. "  They are a "social economic enterprise committed to peace and reconciliation for African women." Every adorable toy is obviously sewn with love.  They sell play aprons, dolls, plush African animals, games and more. (My kids love their stuffed animals! :)

Eternal Threads "mission is 'weaving hope and justice' to improve the lives of women and children who are at risk from extreme poverty and trafficking." They offer unique handmade toys for boys and girls, each with a story to tell.  (My three-year-old loves his little raffia animal set :)

HandUp Global Goods is a "non-profit enterprise dedicated to arming teens in Haiti with jobs, spiritual discipleship, and professional development."  Check out their cool macrame kids' bracelets which provide a "hand up" instead of a "hand out" to young men transitioning out of orphanages!

Destiny Rescue is "an internationally-recognized Christian non-profit organization dedicated to rescuing children trapped in the sex trade."  Their efforts have rescued nearly 2000 children around the world.  They offer beautiful girls' bracelets handmade by rescued girls.

Partners for Just Trade is a "non-profit, faith-based organization that builds partnerships between producers living in extreme poverty and consumers in North America."  They sell adorable hand knitted stuffed animals and finger puppets.  (To also find their products in a retail store near you, click here.)

LivAfrika's mission "is to help support the women and children in South Africa who are affected by extreme poverty, HIV/AIDS and gender inequality." They sell girls' jewelry.

Papillon Enterprise is " a socially & ecologically conscious business with a mission of stimulating the Haitian economy by exporting and marketing Haitian artisan goods. We are creating jobs for mothers & fathers who don’t want to have to abandon their children to an orphanage because they can’t feed them."  They offer adorable Haitian dolls.

Mountain Maid "exists to strengthen the church of Haiti by proclaiming the gospel, making disciples and partnering with local church members to produce products that provide a sustainable income."  They offer amazing wooden toys and games for kids.  (My son absolutely loved his painted wooden truck I ordered for him!)

The Mercy House Shop is "a global marketplace and the beautiful products in this shop are made by women empowered by Mercy House Global."  They "engage women through maternity homes in Kenya and employment through Fair Trade Friday in more than 15 countries all around the world."  They sell toys for kids, including stuffed animals, plush balls, tic-tac-toe games and make-your-own-bracelet kits.



Starfish Project "restores hope to women escaping human trafficking and exploitation in Asia."  Through their social enterprise project "women create beautiful jewelry and become managers, accountants, graphic designers, and photographers."  Buy their adorable girls' necklaces and help bring hope and a new life to these women!

The vast majority of toys sold in the U.S. are made in China.  But the toy industry in China has a rather poor reputation.  Click here to take a photo journey inside China's toy factories.  Or click here to take a video tour.  Some toy companies such as Lego, Playmobil, Bella Luna Toys and Green Toys still manufacture their toys with higher labor standards.  But if you purchase toys for your children through the links below, you will be making a difference for toy makers around the world! 

Pal Craftaid is "a volunteer, non-profit ministry of compassion, hope, and healing for Palestinians."  They sell cute carved olive wood tops for kids.  (I ordered some as prizes for my students and they are beautifully made little tops :)

KidKnits motto is “You’re never too young to change a life on the other side of the world.”  KidKnits "started with the very simple idea of a nine-year old girl – to make hats out of hand-made yarn from Rwanda."  They sell "Me & My Doll craft kits for girls to knit matching hats for themselves and their doll!

Serrv is "a nonprofit, fair trade organization dedicated to lifting disadvantaged artisans, farmers, and their families out of poverty."  They sell games and puzzles and fun instruments for musical play.  (To also find their products in a retail store near you, click here.)

Haiti Design Coop works in Haiti to develop "craftsmen and leaders that are able to use their skills to provide for their families and contribute to the development of their community."  They sell soft stuffed elephants and whales.