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GIFTS THAT GIVE BACK

Small UK companies making a big difference in Africa

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Will Adoasi, founder of Vitae London and social justice champion, on the small UK brands making a big difference in Africa. Here are his favourite gifts that give back...

Many businesses are putting the idea of ‘making a difference’ at their heart, something we are particularly good at doing in the UK. Here are five examples of small UK brands which are incorporating social impact directly into their business models and actively supporting people in Africa.

By buying through these companies you are not just supporting entrepreneurs in the UK, you are tangibly making a difference to people in Africa. And it doesn’t cost a penny extra, so it’s a win-win all round.

Here are some of my favourite gifts that give back… starting with some seriously decent chocolate!

01

Dapaah Chocolates

"Keeping up with family traditions, this sibling trio noticed that despite producing as much as 20% of the world’s global supply of cocoa, Ghana does not have a single chocolate brand that is internationally recognised. With profits from their sales they are aiming to build a sustainable chocolate factory in rural Ghana. This will help add value to Ghana’s cocoa economy, create new jobs, opportunities, and better wages for local cocoa farming communities."

£10; dapaahchocolates.co.uk

02

Kaleidoscope Beauty

"The jewellery brand with philanthropy at its heart. Their unique pieces are hand-made by Kenyan artisans determined to turn their lives around. From young mothers, to reformed criminals and street boys, Kaleidoscope gives them the right tools, training and an opportunity for a career, and a sustainable source of income."

From £16; kaleidoscopebeauty.co.uk

03

Sunmo Snacks

"Having recently landed a contract with Selfridges, this start-up creates plantain-based hand-cooked snacks that are absolutely delicious, 100% natural, and suitable for all; whether you’re vegan, living gluten free, or just ravenous. Every pack of Sunmo you buy provides a meal for an orphaned child in Nigeria - the country that inspired their plantain obsession."

From £20 (pack of 12); sunmosnacks.com

04

GiveMeTap

"This brand makes reusable water bottles - with a difference. Every bottle sold provides clean drinking water, for five years, to someone living in Africa. For every bottle sold, they donate directly to their NGO partners in Africa to install pumps in rural communities."

£12; givemetap.com

05

Vitae London

"Vitae is my baby – a watch brand that changes lives. We started in 2016 and got endorsed by Richard Branson, which was a big boost for a small company. With every watch Vitae London donates a solar lamp to a child in Sub-Saharan Africa meaning they don’t have to travel for hours or burn harmful fuels to study in the evening. We recently launched our new Elmington Range on Kickstarter, so you can help an African child and own a beautiful watch. Early backers can get over 50% off, too."

Order now for £99 (£199 RRP); kickstarter.com

Follow Vitae Watches on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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