Three Meaningful and Unique Father’s Day Gifts

image source: flickr
image source: flickr

Fathers are notoriously hard to shop for. They usually don’t need more ties or another coffee mug, and after a few years, even the latest gadget feels, well…uninspired. So what can you buy for dad that will touch his heart? Is there a personal gift that says thanks and shows him he’s taught you what’s important in life?

Check out our Top 3 most thoughtful Father’s Day Gifts that give back. . . and give Dad a gift that changes the world!


Does your dad love wine? We recently discovered ONEHOPE Wine and fell in love. ONEHOPE has a partnership with Robert Mondavi and donates half of their profits to charity. To date, they’ve donated over $1 million to their partner charities for a variety of causes, which range from autism to animals. Send your dad a bottle directly from ONEHOPE, or sign him up for their wine club. Too close to Father’s Day to have it shipped? You can also find ONEHOPE in stores like Whole Foods and Raley’s.

(RED) Campaign Apple iPods

Go (RED)! In case you haven’t heard about the campaign: (RED) was started in 2005 by Bono (of U2) to help end the AIDS epidemic in Africa. There are many (RED) products, which donate a portion of their proceeds to AIDS charities working in Africa. Since it takes only 40 cents a day to keep someone living with HIV in Africa alive, one purchase can make a big difference. Check out their online assortment for men, or visit retail stores like Apple and Bed Bath and Beyond.

Father's Day Charity Gift Guide

Or skip the retail hassle all together, and give directly to his favorite cause. JustGive has many gift options that make charitable giving (and receiving!) a joy. Our new Charity Gift Guide has 12 tangible and “manly” gifts of charity, so it’s easy to find one that fits your Dad. For example:

Another great option (besides donating in his name) is a personalized charity gift card—upload a special photo of the two of you and have it delivered to his email inbox. (You can even schedule it to arrive on Father’s Day!) You choose the amount, he chooses the charity to support.

Dads may be hard to buy for, but that doesn’t mean you need to settle for a boring gift. These are our three favorite inspired ideas. For more, see our Great Charitable Products guide on Pinterest. (And don’t forget to follow us!)

—Sara Olsher, Marketing Manager

The Guy Who Has Everything

My Dad has everything.

A tie (one).  It has The Beatles on it, naturally. He wears it anytime he needs to wear a tie, which isn’t often due to a carefully planned career of self-employment, entrepreneurism and a California lifestyle.

Geeky Dad sandals that he appropriately pairs with socks and a Hawaiian shirt.  “It’s special,” he says, “because it is the same shirt Lieutenant Dan wore in Forrest Gump”.

*Caveat: The shirt in this photo is not THE shirt, but you get the gist.

The coolest, most brag-worthy and up-to-the-minute technology.  Literally, his watch pulls the accurate-to-the-second time from the Atomic Clock in Colorado and glows when he flicks his wrist (powered of course by a built-in solar panel which collects its energy from the sun).  Over the years, I have learned to expect no less from this savviest of Dads.

Three stupendous daughters, if I might say so myself, who make him proud with their education and do-gooding and to which he always repeats “don’t get me anything, I have everything I need.”  Sometimes when mom says this, it not-so-secretly means “you better get me my favorite flowers and a spa package,” but with my Dad, we comply and settle for a breakfast on the town and a cheesy card he’ll soon misplace in a pile of WIRED magazines.

Maybe this year we can get him something that’s not a “thing”…

One of the reasons we moved to northern California in my youth was for the unparalleled scenic beauty and the fact that there are “more trees than people” as my Dad always says. And one of the products my Dad developed in his long technology career is a programming language for kids that teachers are using in schools to get students learning, for instance, to develop and build games – not just play them.

Just by being himself, my Dad both appreciates the finer things in life like music, technology, and the environment, and he inspires me (and others) to do the same.

So I’m planning a unique tribute to him this Father’s Day – JustGive style – a charity Gift Collection that donates to the causes that embody what is best about my Dad. Like a Plant Trees  or Inspire Children & Change Their Lives gift collection that spreads support to four charities working to make a difference.

My sisters can upload a special photo of us and personalize a GiveNow charity gift card that lets him choose to benefit a special charity, like Bay Area Community Resources where he does IT work. We’re excited to celebrate the day with him in a special and unique way. Giving him something that means so much more than any “thing” we could ever find – that he would probably lose!  🙂

How are you celebrating with your Dad? Share your story on Facebook and let’s keep the great ideas flowing because our Dads deserve it.

Author: Michelle Koffler

Giving Back on Father’s Day

Visit for Father's Day Gifts

Honoring the Men who Made Us Who We Are

I was eight years old when my father stepped back on the wrestling mat after more than twenty years. His first opponent turned out to be one of the best wrestlers in the high school’s history, a hulking, punishing, future Marine. That matchup was no mistake; it was a trial by fire.

He made it through that first day and kept going until I graduated from high school. He was 55. His choice to throw his hat onto the mat was a formative experience for me; coming with him to practices and matches, watching him interact with my boyhood heroes. Looking back what really influenced me was his passion for the sport and for life.

The Gift that Says More

This Father’s Day I want to show my father how much his exuberance for life influenced me. And a tie just won’t do. That’s why I’m dedicating a donation to Beat the Streets in his honor.

Beat the Streets funds a program that is expanding wrestling into urban New York areas for middle school and high school students who otherwise would not be exposed to the world’s oldest sport. Wrestling builds confidence and capabilities for young people and helps them develop mental toughness and work ethics. These inherent requirements are critical to success in every sport as well as to success in academics and to success in life.

I learned about Beat the Streets when they were promoting their annual gala. Each year, Beat the Streets celebrates wrestling with some of the thousands of students whose lives they’ve touched. This year their Main Event was conducted on the deck of the USS Intrepid with over 1,200 people witnessing some of the nation’s top wrestlers including several wrestlers from Beat the Streets.

Athletes of all shapes and sizes can excel and enjoy wrestling. And all can benefit from the physical activity, strength and healthy self-esteem that come along with the sport.

My father was never a coach, never paid, and never came back excited that he was able to beat a wrestler. He was patient, helpful, and enthusiastic with every wrestler. His team’s wins and losses mattered in the moment, but they weren’t held onto with ego or regret. My father wrestled because he loved the sport. That passion is what I carry with me every day, and what I want to give back.

Donate Now to a charity your Dad cares most about. Add a personal message and we’ll take care of all the delivery details, if you like. Every gift made through JustGive can be designated as a memorial gift—the perfect way to honor and remember your Dad if he has passed.

Don’t know what charity your Dad is passionate about? Personalize a GiveNow charity gift card your Dad can redeem to give to his favorite charity.

Visit us on Facebook and tell us about a charity that reminds you of your Dad!

Celebrate Dad’s inspiration and life lessons

When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years. – Mark Twain

Father's Day

This Father’s Day, the JustGive team is sharing stories about our Dads and the ways we can honor what they’ve taught us.

“Weekends with Dad meant being outdoors—road trips to Yosemite, hiking through local waterfalls or riding motorcycles in the desert. He inspired my love of travel, nature, and conservation. We put the saying ‘take nothing but memories, leave nothing but footprints’ into action. A Gift Collection that supports four environmental charities is a great way to thank my Dad and preserve the great outdoors for future memories.” – Sarah, Program Manager

“My Dad had a big heart. He was a crew cut, salt of the Earth, no-nonsense farmer and blacksmith who worked hard to provide for us. He gave of his time fighting fires in our community and became the Chief of Wanatah’s Volunteer Fire Department before he died. In his memory and to help my hometown, I started a recurring online donation to the fire department. For all my Dad was, what he gave to our town and what he taught me by his example, it’s one of the best ways I know to honor him.” – Candy, Marketing Consultant

“Whenever my bike broke (or later my car), he would always be willing to fix it, but we’d have to help him. We couldn’t go do something else. We had to get the wrench or screwdriver and listen to him moan about ‘if you want something done right, you need to do it yourself. For Father’s Day I make a gift to Big Brothers and Big Sisters because not everyone has a mentor like my dad.’”– Andrea, Director of Programs

Supporting charities that provide mentoring and enrichment to children carries that lesson forward. And a $10 gift allows Boys & Girls Clubs of America to reach out to kids who cannot afford community programs.

“For the last few Father’s Days, we have celebrated my dad who died four years ago. Typically this is done with champagne and an elaborate meal because he would have wanted it that way. My dad was big time into gadgets and culinary extravagance. While he got great pleasure from splurging in this fashion, he also was one of the most generous people I knew—adopting surrogate relatives right and left, showering them with the same enthusiasm. In this spirit, I have sought my own means for helping others—more in a volunteer capacity than a gift-giving one.

This Father’s Day is the first for my husband, since we welcomed our first child this March. So we will have a new way to celebrate and new traditions to establish.” – Marina, Design and Production Manager

A $50 donation to Foster Care Support Foundation in memory of her Dad’s generosity towards others will buy an entire wardrobe for an elementary foster child. Volunteering locally is simply a matter of getting in contact with organizations in the area. From feeding the homeless to planting trees, find ways to make a difference in your community at Volunteer Match.

“My Dad and I live in different states, so we’ll be celebrating over the phone. He has always been supportive of me, no matter what. One meaningful lesson that my dad taught me is to always be true to myself. He encouraged me to challenge the status quo, and to not worry about what others thought. He also taught me about compassion and helping others, which influenced my choice to work for a non-profit and give back to the community. My dad has been a case manager working with the elderly and disabled population for over 20 years, and he has always been very dedicated to his work. He showed me that a job is not just about money, it can be so much more.” – Kelly, Customer Service Manager

A GiveNow Charity Gift Card lets Kelly’s Dad (or any Dad) choose from nearly 1.5 million charities and support the cause that he cares about most.

For Fathers everywhere—On your special day, we celebrate, thank and honor you!