10 ASEAN Social Enterprises to Buy Holiday Gifts From

10 ASEAN Social Enterprises to Buy Holiday Gifts From

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! This festive season definitely warrants a gift-giving shopping spree. We have scouted for social enterprises in ASEAN countries where you can buy thoughtful gifts while supporting its sustainable or social causes!

Here is a list of online shops where you can easily score gifts that are one of a kind.

1. Air Amber (Singapore)

If you’re up for a delightful tea experience to warm yourself during the holidays, teas from Air Amber might pique your interest.

Air Amber is a social enterprise that works to positively impact communities globally. Their products are co-created and inspired by cultures from around the world. 

Our Top Picks

  1. Nilu Tea: the first female-founded tea business in Sri Lankais extremely inspiring. Founder, Nilushika (Nilu), began as a domestic helper for 16 years in Singapore before finding her calling as an entrepreneur after enrolling in classes. As you enjoy the world-famous Sri Lankan Ceylon tea, know that 10% of its profits benefit Emerging Hope Lanka, a non-profit organisation that empowers and educates women in Sri Lanka to start their own micro-business.
  2. ‍Storybooks written by children from The Early Childhood Development Centre (ECDC) in Kathmandu, Nepal: a great pick for kids with an equally great story of resilient kids whose parents were incarcerated
  3. GIGI Blocks: a collapsible solution to building blocks that can create interactive, life-sized structure. Build, unbuild and build again! Sheer fun for both kids and adults.
  4. Soufra cookbook: a lovely gift for home cooks and chefs out there. The book shares the most treasured recipes that changed the lives of the women of the Burj el-Barajneh refugee camp in Lebanon. We’ve tried some of their recipes and can vouch for the flavours! 100% of the proceeds go to the Children’s Centre located within the camp.

Don’t miss out on Air Amber’s holiday sale!

Ships to: Australia, Cambodia, Hong Kong SAR, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.

2. Rags2Riches (Philippines)

Everything you see here is crafted by Rags2Riches’ community of Filipino artisans and features handwoven textiles and upcycled overstock fabrics.

Their quality products are recognised by well-known designers and big companies such as IKEA and Anthropologie.

Our Top Picks

  1. 4-way tops and dresses: For people who love to explore styles, Rags2Riches makes interesting clothes to mix and match with your fit. 
  2. Home accessories that make for insta-worthy decor like the cosy floor pouffs.
  3. Bag lovers will love the varieties of Rags2Riches’ eco-ethical handbags, crossbodies, fanny packs, wallets & clutches. Get them a special edition to make them feel one of a kind.

If you want to make some changes, they also accept customised and made-to-order versions of their existing designs. With Rags2Riches, style and sustainability can coexist! Check out their classics. They ship internationally!

3. Fugeelah (Malaysia)

Make people feel just as special as the holidays with a beautiful piece of jewellery from social enterprise, Fugeelah, founded by child's rights advocate and former beauty queen Deborah Henry. 

If your special someone is always stacked with lovely rings, beaded bracelets or colourful necklaces, Fugeelah makes a great place to visit. 

Our Top Picks

  1. Hexagon Arabic word pendant: Kindness/Lutf
  2. Achromatic chain link necklace
  3. Handmade Zohal coral necklace 
  4. Circle Arabic word pendant: Joy/Farah

Fugeelah’s eclectic range of styles and unique collaborations could just be your one-stop shop for gifts this season.

Fugeelah allocates profits to sustain income and upskill opportunities for children and youth seeking refuge in Malaysia. 

They ship internationally! Get yours here.

4. SukkhaCitta (Indonesia)

SukkhaCitta is an award-winning social enterprise in Indonesia. Handcrafted by women in villages, their products are made using signature raw cotton fabric and naturally dyed using materials grown with regenerative farming techniques.

SukkhaCitta's collection of farm-to-closet essentials such as tops, bottoms and dresses will not disappoint. They also make accessories such as multifunctional scarves and cute scrunchies.  If you purchase an eco-gift wrapper, you can also leave a handwritten note.

Our Top Picks

  1. ANGKASA - Tilem Dress
  2. KAPAS - Nerd Shirt (Gender Neutral)
  3. PAGISENJA - Fitted Pants
  4. ALUNAN - Silk Square Scarf

A portion of the profit made from each garment is used to build craft schools in rural villages. They ship internationally. Shop it here!

5. Akha Ama (Thailand)

Looking for a brew-tiful gift for coffee lovers? Award-winning social enterprise Akha Ama makes artisanal coffee grown by the ethnic Akha tribe. It is situated in the laid-back city of Chiang Mai which is also the country’s coffee capital.

Born to the Akha hill tribe, its owner Lee Ayu Chuepa founded Akha Ama to help his community sell their completely pesticide-free and hand-picked beans without a middleman for a fair trade. 

Wherever you fall on the caffeine spectrum, Akha Ama has got you. Their blends are available from ‘very light’ to ‘dark’ roasts, and come in the form of coffee capsules, drip bags and ready-to-drink cold brews, allowing for easy preparation and enjoyment from the comfort of your home.

Our Top Picks:

  1. Medium roast Drip coffee bag
  2. The creamy Italian roast
  3. This strong roast coffee

Gift your caffeinated-powered loved ones from here. They ship to Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hong Kong SAR, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and the United States.

6. Hla Day (Myanmar)

Everything from Hla Day is made by a local, Myanmar artist. Hla Day works with Myanmar artisans, disadvantaged groups and small local businesses and provides them with training to design, develop and sell quality handmade products with a contemporary twist. The products capture a unique touch of the Myanmar design by improvising traditional skills. 

Our Top Picks:

  1. Discover homeware gifts they’ll love this season like this Christmas-themed table runner, photo frame or this hanging star ornament.
  2. You cannot find this unique recycled glassware collection among the many mass-produced glassware.
  3. For kids, check out the Naga Story Book, paper mache toys like this woodpecker, and the flying santa!

Place your orders online via Hla Day’s Facebook page or Instagram. They offer international shipping! Or you can also visit their store from 10am to 6pm at 81 Pansodan Street, Middle lower block, Yangon.

7. WOO Vietnam (Vietnam)

Who cares? WOO cares. WOO Vietnam’s premium home and body care products are handcrafted with care using upcycled materials and natural ingredients. 

WOO or Worlds Of Opportunities is a social enterprise and premium impact brand based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. They generate opportunities through employment and partnerships for people in marginalised populations and partner with local artisans and empower them to achieve a better quality of life.

Our Top Picks:

  1. Candles: If you’re feeling stressed out, relax and light up your life with WOO’s hand-poured candle.
  2. Or envelop your space with the subtle, sumptuous scent of this room spray. 
  3. Set the mood with WOO’s reed diffuser made with upcycled wine bottle, bamboo, and rattan reeds.

And yes, they ship internationally! Order yours here.

8. Dorsu (Cambodia)

Get your closet essentials ethically made from Dorsu. Founder, Vanna Sann, leads one of the few locally-owned and privately-held garment manufacturers in the country. 

Dorsu, which means resilience in Khmer, challenges the conventional approach of today’s fashion industry by reshaping the way their production process is approached from designed to delivery. Their versatile designs are carefully crafted in soft, breathable cotton jersey.

Our Top Picks:

  1. Slouch T-Shirt: a relaxed fit with dropped shoulders and a cropped front paired with their Slouch Pants.
  2. This scoop back dress in coral is now available in oatmeal, dark coral and light teal.
  3. Intimates: this grey-coloured men’s boxer briefs and this comfortable classic briefs for women.

If your style choices are minimalistic, with a nod to the love for neutral tones, Dorsu’s plains and basics are perfect to streamline your wardrobe. Shop their menswear, womenswear and unisex collections here as they ship internationally!

Vanna Sann had joined us at Goal Social 2022, where he shared about what it takes to attract and retain great talent as a social enterprise. Hear more from social entrepreneurs from the region on Venture Into Good.

9. Kaimana Living (Brunei)

If you’re looking to encourage a sustainable and plastic-free lifestyle amongst your friends, this is for you. Kaimana Living, Brunei's first dedicated store specialising in the curation of high quality products for low waste living.

Choose from a range of refillables from over 600 household, storage, and personal care products.

Our Top Picks:

  1. This crocheted Mersaktiba Coasters will save your table from any scratches and stains.
  2. This special release Holiday Bundle has a massage tool gua sha, a carrier oil, a clay and a small wooden spoon.
  3. This delicious snack gift set of 2 glass hex jars in any combination of granola, nuts or seaweed keropok.

If you’re based in Brunei, you can bring back the containers from your previous purchase to the outlet shops for a top-up to save on packaging. 

Kaimana is proud to be Brunei's first dedicated low waste refill store. Visit Kaimana’s outlet in Mabohai Shopping Complex or Kuala Belait! Delivery & pickup are available in Brunei only.

10. Ock Pop Tok (Laos)

Founded and run by women, Ock Pop Tok (East meets West in Lao) keeps the textile traditions of Laos alive and thriving.

Women artisans work in-house at the centre and dye their products using endemic plants. With Ock Pop Tok's range of scarves, shawls, home decor, bags and accessories, you won’t run out of choices here! 

Our Top Picks:

  1. Their first scarf designs remains the most popular, the Khanna Silk Scarf
  2. This award-winning Silk Organza Wall Hanging made by a master weaver
  3. This cute yet sturdy Cotton Bucket Bag has beads woven into the cotton fibres so they will not fall off!

Learn embroidery with Ock Pop Tok’s DIY kits to make crafts like this cute tote bag and carry your spare change using this coin purse. If you visit their weaving centre, you’d get to explore a variety of classes like the natural dye-making process and the Hmong batik.

Keep the Laos textile traditions alive. Visit Ock Pop Tok's online marketplace as they ship internationally or one of their physical shops.

Curious to find out how you could integrate impact into your business? Check out our Case Studies

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