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Ethical Shopping

Looking for a gift hamper that makes a difference? Meet Social Stories Club

Ethical teas, truffles, socks, and more make up the gift hampers from Social Stories Club

As part of our Meet the Maker series, we speak to the people behind the creations in the Big Issue Shop – a platform for buying ethical products which put people and the planet first. This time, we speak to Karis Gill, co-founder of Social Stories Club.

What can we find on your part of the Big Issue Shop?

The most exciting social enterprise gift hampers are filled with incredible products such as teas, truffles, and socks that each have a fascinating story of how they make a difference in the world such as educating girls or providing employment to individuals with disabilities.

We set out to make the most impactful gift that is exciting to give and receive. Check out our range of ethical gift boxes and hampers, there’s really something for everyone.

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How do your products make a positive difference in the world?

By giving a Social Stories Club gift hamper you are introducing the world to social enterprises and their incredible stories. You will also be creating jobs for those who need them most as we hire individuals with barriers to employment and are a living wage employer. All our gifts are packaged in sustainable materials, and we offset the carbon from delivery too.

What inspired you to start your company and how did it start?

We have a vision for the world that one day every business will be led by a social mission and businesses will lead in solving some of the worlds biggest challenges.

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We found incredible social enterprises who were employing individuals with disabilities, building schools, rescuing dogs, etc and we wanted to showcase them to the world. If you know what a social enterprise is but your friend doesn’t you can introduce them through a Social Stories Club sustainable hamper. We also share all of the inspiring social stories in a story booklet included inside.

The selection to be found in a Christmas treats box. Image: Social Stories Club

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What is the biggest issue everyone should know about at the moment?

We rely on government collaborations and legislation to solve some of the world’s biggest challenges when that is largely out of the control of most of the population and is taking too much time.

Businesses are far more agile and innovative and are already creating solutions to some of these challenges. Businesses are already leading in solving these issues and we need to provide adequate support for them to do so. Examples of these businesses can include green tech companies and social enterprises supporting communities. Most problems have been solved somewhere in the world by entrepreneurs and if we duplicate these solutions across geographic locations, we can accelerate progress.

Social enterprises are creating jobs and training opportunities for the most vulnerable in society, and in the UK employ two million people. After three difficult years with first the pandemic, the cost of living crisis, and now a recession, social enterprises need the support from the public now more than ever. Many companies make up to 80 per cent of their yearly sales at Christmas time and are relying on individuals purchasing from them at Christmas. At Social Stories Club, we make the majority of our yearly sales at Christmas and our hampers support multiple social enterprises. We are trying to educate about how easy it is to make an impact by buying one of our sustainable hampers, and that it makes an enormous difference to us.

What is one thing anyone can do to make a positive difference?

Message a friend and tell them what you appreciate about them and why you are grateful for their friendship. A simple message like this can make someone’s day. If you want to step it up, send it to them in a card through the post. There is nothing more exciting than getting mail which isn’t bills. If I ever have a friend who is going through a difficult period, I send them one of our gift boxes, and I know it means a lot to them.

To find the Social Stories Club on the Big Issue Shop, click here.

And to find more ethical products on the Big Issue shop, click here.

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